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Obituaries   >   New Jersey   >   June 24,   1896


Mrs. Mary I. Pittinger.

Mrs. Mary I. Pittinger, wife of Charles Pittinger of Wallace street, died suddenly yesterday morning of heart disease, aged 24 years. She was taken sick early on Monday night. She vomited freely and could not lie down. About three o'clock on Tuesday morning she became so bad that a physician was summoned. She grew slightly better afterward. About five o'clock, her husband, who works for Hendrickson & Applegate, went out to attend to his horses and on his return home he found his wife dead. Many of her relatives died in much the same manner. She was born at Farmingdale and her maiden name was Cottrell. She leaves two young children. Her funeral will be held at Farmingdale tomorrow afternoon.

Mrs. Alice A. Bergen.

Mrs. Alice A. Bergen, wife of Rev. George Bergen, died in New York on Wednesday, June 10th, of consumption. Mrs. Bergen was a daughter of Ann and Charles P. Messler of Clarksburg and was 29 years old. She leaves six brothers and sisters, three of whom are Ella and Vincent Messler of Clarksburg and Fletcher Messler of Asbury Park. Mrs. Bergen contracted the disease which caused her death by exposure, while trying to save furniture from her house, which had caught fire.

Isaac Wales.

Isaac Wales died of old age at Navesink on Thursday. He was 84 years old and had been in ill health for over a year. He was a member of Zion church at Navesink. His widow and two children survive him. His funeral was held on Sunday afternoon. The services were conducted by Rev. W. W. Johnson of Hillside and the interment was in the new cemetery at Navesink.

Mrs. Caroline M. Rogers.

Mrs. Caroline M. Rogers died of consumption at Long Branch on Sunday of last week, aged 73 years. She was first attacked with consumption about two years ago, but had taken to her bed only a week previous to her death. She was a member of the Presbyterian church. One daughter, Mrs. W. L. Throckmorton of Long Branch, survives her.

Benjamin D. Horner.

Benjamin D. Horner, a well-known farmer of Upper Freehold township, died at Imlaystown on Friday, June 12th, aged 73 years. For a number of years he had been troubled with asthma, which later on developed into consumption. He had been confined to his bed for the past six months. A widow survives him.

Miss Christiana Matthews.

Miss Christiana Matthews, only daughter of James Matthews of Keyport, died on Friday, June 12th. Her death was caused by consumption, with which she had been sick for a number of years. She was 37 years old.

David D. Southard.

David D. Southard died at Unionville, in Freehold township, last Wednesday. He was eighty years old. He was married twice and a widow and nine children survive him.

Frank Holmes.

Frank Holmes died of consumption at his home at Keyport on Tuesday of last week, aged 43 years. He was a son of Asher Holmes and leaves a widow and one child.

Walter T. Newell

Walter T. Newell of Scobeyville died of consumption at a hospital at Trenton on Tuesday of last week. He was 34 years old and was a son of Thomas Newell.


  • BERGEN - In New York, on Wednesday, June 10th, Alice A., wife of Rev. George Bergen and daughter of Ann and Charles P. Messler of Clarksburg, aged 29 years.

  • HORNER - At Imlaystown, on Friday, June 12th, Benjamin D. Horner, aged 73 years.

  • HOLMES - At Keyport, on Tuesday, June 16th, Frank Holmes, aged 43 years and 9 months.

  • KUFFER - Near Keyport, on Monday, June 15th, Fannie, daughter of Jacob Kuffer, aged 11 years and 5 months.

  • MATTHEWS - At Keyport, on Friday, June 12th, Miss Christiana Matthews, aged 37 years.

  • NEWELL - At Trenton, on Tuesday, June 16th, Walter T. Newell of Scobeyville, aged 34 years.

  • PITTINGER - At Red Bank, on Tuesday, June 23d, Mary I., wife of Charles Pittinger, aged 24 years.

  • ROGERS - At Long Branch, on Sunday, June 14th, Mrs. Caroline M. Rogers, aged 73 years.

  • SORRELL - At Long Branch, on Wednesday, June 17th, Viola, daughter of Edward Sorrell, aged 20 years.

  • SOUTHARD - In Freehold township, on Wednesday, June 17th, David D. Southard, aged 80 years.

  • WALES - At Navesink, on Thursday, June 18th, Isaac Wales, aged 84 years.


    An Early Burying Ground in New Jersey Now in a State of Great Neglect - To Be Put in Order by the Daughters of the Revolution.

    About a mile and a quarter west of the village of Marlboro, three or four hundred yards away from the "old back road" toward Tennent, on a shaded knoll on the farm owned by the estate of the late Hendrick E. Conover of Freehold, is located the historic old graveyard of Topanemus. Although this spot is closely associated with the earliest religious history of New Jersey and, indeed of North America, it has fallen into ruin and decay, and but little is heard of it nowadays, although a few years ago it was a favorite theme for historic writers.

    In the year 1684 John Barclay, Thomas Laurie and a few other Scotch and English Quakers, who had settled in what is now Marlboro township, built a rough meeting-house without a floor on the site of the old graveyard. For years it was the center for the meeting of the Quakers of all this part of Jersey. One of the most prominent of the Quakers was George Keith, afterward the founder of Freehold. He was appointed surveyor-general of the colony in 1684 and ran the dividing line between East and West Jersey. He had some trouble with religious authorities and returned to England, where he became converted to the Episcopal church. In 1702 he returned to his old home as a missionary and succeeded in converting many of the Quakers to his new belief. He must have been a changeable chap, as it is said that he was originally a Scotch Presbyterian.

    Keith's followers soon became so numerous that the members of the Topanemus church went over in a body to the Episcopal church, and their rude church was improved and became known as "St. Peter's at Toponemes." This last is probably the most correct spelling of the name, which has always been a matter of dispute. The church received a regular charter as a parish of the Church of England from King George the Second, bearing the date June 4th, 1636. Two years later the old building was carefully taken down and moved to Freehold, where it still stands and has been used ever since. The interior has been remodeled and the building has been enlarged, but the present spire and the framework with the shingle sides are still well preserved. The early records of the church were nearly all lost during the Revolution by the rector, Rev. Samuel Cook, who took all of them that he could carry and went to Canada. While crossing the St. Lawrence river the boat upset and the documents were lost forever.

    Until recent years the old graveyard was tenderly cared for, but the tenants of the farm on which it is located gradually lost interest in it. The stones fell and crumbled and weeds and briers ran riot over it. A year or two ago the place was cleared up again and better care has since been taken of it, but the lettering on the moss-grown and storm-defaced stones has almost been obliterated. Only a few of the stones now remain in an erect position, and those on which the inscriptions can still be read can be counted on the fingers.

    A better order of things is now promised for the place. Mrs. Margaret Herbert Mather of Bound Brook, who is a prominent and active member of the society of the daughters of the American Revolution, has undertaken the patriotic work of restoring the place as far as it can be done. It is her intention to have the prostrate stones reset and the broken ones repaired wherever possible, and to have the whole enclosed with a suitable fence. She will be assisted in the work by subscriptions from those whose ancestors rest there.

    Among the tombstones whose inscriptions may still be read is that of John Reid, a prominent Scotch Quaker, who first settled at Amboy, bur afterward moved to Topanemus, or near there. He was a surveyor and lawyer and was appointed surveyor-general in 1702. What may still be read of the inscription is as follows:

      Here lies the body of John Reid
      who came from Scotland

    His native Country with his wife, Margaret and three daughters to New Jersey the 19th of Dec., A. D. 1683. He died the 16th of Nov., 1724, aged 67 years.

    Near the center of the graveyard is the grave of Thomas Warne, covered with a slab about six feet by three, on which is this inscription:

    Here is interred the body of Thomas Warne. He was born in Plymouth, in Devonshire, Great Britain. Lived some time in Ireland, and in the 31st year of his age came over as a Proprietor in East Jersey. Who died with the dead, May 15th, Anno 1722, aged seventy years.

    Southeast of Thomas Warne's grave is the last resting place of Col. John Anderson, who was a judge of Monmouth county and at one time the president of the British Council of the province, as the following inscription from his tombstone relates:

    Col. John Anderson, once President of His Majesty's Council of the Province of New Jersey, who died the 28th day of March 1736, aged 71 years.

     "His Country's true friend, obliging to neighbors,
      Gave no man offence, paid each for their labors,
      Was easy at home, abroad dare appear,
      Gave each man his dues and no man did fear."

    Among the other names that appear on the stones that lie about, many are familiar with us to-day, among them being Reid, Baird, Clark, Doue, Rockhed, etc. Many persons were evidently buried without any tombstones being erected, or else what was used to mark their resting place has been utterly destroyed by time, as the graves are only discernible by slight depressions in the ground.

    Source: Red Bank Register, June 24, 1896

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