Peoria County, Illinois Genealogy Trails

Watkins Family Cemetery Overview

Watkins Family Cemetery
Elmwood Township, Sec. 30
Peoria County, IL

 

 

Location: On the private ground of the Inland Dairy Company in Elmwood Township.

:Driving Directions:
Drive to the town of Elmwood. At the intersection of Routes 8 & 78 (Illinois Routes) turn right 1 block to Wiley Road. Turn left (gas station on one corner & Elmwood Town Hall opposite). Continue on Wiley Road 2 miles to Taggert Road. This road is gravel & goes back to the commercial property, the INWOOD DIARY. Vast improvement have been done to this remote cemetery over the past year and a half. A white fence now surrounds the cemetery and 5 graves are marked, versus 3 from 1-1/2 years ago. 2 Civil War stones & 1 Blackhawk Indian War stone.

 

In 2002, only 3 stones were in evidence with no grass close. A year and a half later, I returned to find that they did enclose the graves with a white fence. In 2004, grass is plentiful and I found the 3 initial stones (2 Civil War & 1 Blackhawk War) PLUS 2 paved bases with, what looks to be a footstone, standing upright on one base. Thus, 5 graves instead of 3.


INWOOD DAIRY is now under new ownership. I spoke with the wife of the owner who is also a Dairy manager & sec'try. They will preserve the cemetery and will try to further enhance it so they, and others, would be proud to visit. The only negative I could identify is the odor of a dairy production and the presence of the sewage ponds. The odor, though in evidence, was not overpowering. Anyone who has grown up in the country or on a farm would say the odor wasn't at all bad.

WATKINS CEMETERY has gone from Endangered to PROTECTED. I, personally, feel it advisable to recheck on conditions in 2005 & each year until 2010. It would be a shame to loose these valuable stones. History abounds in Peoria County & should be protected whenever possible.
From: Steve Slaughter

Closeup of the cemetery.

 

Mr. Fountain Watkins once owned this farm where the cemetery is located.
His farm was a stop on the Underground Railroad for the fleeing slaves, 1840 to 1865.
The only headstones that remain are those of Fountain Watkins and his two sons, William and Jesse.

 

Jesse Watkins
Sgt. Co. D
8 Regt. MO Inf.

Fountain Watkins
Illinois
Pvt.
Mounted Ranger
Nov. 13,1808- Mar. 24, 1887

*Blackhawk War Veteran*

 William Watkins
Co. L
9 Regt. IL Cav.

 

 

 

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