Wind in my face to a place of rest. A calmness comes over me, soothing, relaxing, restoring my soul. Quiet except for the sound of Spring. Birds chirping. A slight breeze blowing. Escaping the drama of the world, ending with wind in my face going home.
I have traveled down New Burlington Road many times while out for a leisurely ride on the motorcycle, and have passed this cemetery without much notice. But, the other day, I noticed and turned in to the New Burlington Cemetery, wondering what I might find on the hillside. Curiosity was my guide.
It appears that the cemetery began as the Jenkins family plot circa 1806. The Northwest Ordinance of 1787 opened up the Northwest Territories and pioneers began settling the land now known as Ohio. Many old cemeteries began as family plots.
I pulled to the middle of the cemetery, noticing more recent burial plots and modern headstones. But there in the middle was an unexpected memorial. It was a tribute to the men and women of the armed forces who are buried there. The names on the list was extensive. Both sides of the memorial gave honor to those who served. Army. Navy. Air Force. Marines. I noticed that the U.S. Coast Guard was omitted, perhaps an innocent omission.
A cemetery that began in 1806 must certainly have an older section, and I found it at the very back in the corner of this peaceful piece of land.
I walked amongst the headstones looking at the records of birth and death. I also noticed the recognition of military service with the placement of small American Flags. Such is the final resting place of so many, and buried with them their family history.
I wandered back to my motorcycle, and rolled out of the cemetery pausing to take another picture of my curious adventure into history.
On a recent trip to Nashville, I took the time to visit the Stones River National Battlefield, at Murfreesboro, Tennessee, one of the Civil War’s biggest and bloodiest battles.
Like many others, I am a student of the Civil War. It was a dark moment in our history, but one that set the course for our united nation. And so, I like to visit Civil War sites when I get the chance. The Stones River battle lasted three days, beginning December 31, 1862 and ending January 2, 1863. Three days. Union and Confederate forces numbered about 81,000. According to Stone River Battlefield information, the Union had 13,249 casualties and the Confederate forces suffered 10,266, with the Union declaring victory as the Confederates retreated.
That’s nearly 24,000 casualties in three days of fierce battle. To put that in perspective, there were about 58,000 military fatal casualties in the entirety of the Vietnam Conflict, 1955-1975.
24,000 in three days. It was a blood bath on both sides with each side losing about one-third of their troops. Many of the Union soldiers who died are buried across the street from the Visitor’s Center in the National Cemetery.