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Michael O'Hair Gravesite

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November 30, 1948

State of Illinois   )

                         ) SS:

County of Edgar )

Affidavit concerning the location of the burial place of Michael O'Hair, soldier of the Revolution.

I, affiant Adin Baber of Kansas, Illinois, Edgar County, being 56 years of age, of good memory, and interested in family ancestry, wish to state that I am a descendant of Michael O'Hair and, lately learning that few people know the location of his grave and, having some knowledge of it myself, make this record for the future.

The late J. Green Trimble at Hazel Green, Kentucky on August 20, 1908 made a statement regarding the grave of Michael O'Hair in which he said, " . . . died near Hazel Green, Kentucky about the year 1819, and his remains occupy an unmarked grave on a high elevation near that town which he has often seen."

In a letter dated August 11, 1894 J. Green Trimble stated to Mr. James A. Curtis of Putnamville, Indiana, after saying that the Michael O'Hair grave was unmarked, said, "I know within a few feet of the location of his grave. Peace to his ashes."

About twenty-five years ago the late Frank T. O'Hair of Paris, Illinois and I went to Mt. Sterling, Ky., where we hired a driver with a Model T. Ford to take us on up to Hazel Green. The roads, at that time, were not improved and the trip took a day going up and another day coming out. While there Frank took me to a hill to the easterly side of Hazel Green, upon the top of which was a pioneer graveyard where, he said, his mother, who was Nancy Evelyn Swango O'Hair, had told him Michael O'Hair was supposed to be buried. At that time the hill-top was covered with a thicket of schrubs and black berry briars among which a few unmared stones could be seen.

Then on June 22, 1928 in the company of Berry Pieratt, the late Frank T. O'Hair, and the late Judge James H. Swango of Terre Haute, Ind., I visited Hazel Green, Ky. again. We were led by Jim Swango to the same hill-top just east of Hazel Green, where I had been before, and there Jim pointed out to us a spot where there were several unmarked gravestones, and said that we were near the grave of Old Michael O'Hair. Then he made the flat statement that Uncle Green Trimble had pointed out to him the same two or three graves and, in his turn, had said that one

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of them was the grave of Michael O'Hair, as he had often been told by some of his uncles and aunts, the children of Old Mike.

At this time the hill-top had been somewhat cleared. Thereupon the late Carl Mize, who was with us, took my camera and, stand­ing with his back towards Hazel Green, pointing the camera easterly, took a picture of we four grouped around the most prominent central stone. (A picture of this is on the next page.)

In the middle distance, between Frank and Jim, and above the stone you may see the farm buildings at Swango Springs. These landmarks should also help locate the spot. Underneath the tree in the right middle distance are three graves which Jim said were graves of negroes who had been slaves of some of the Trimbles.

Again on June 12, 1940 with my wife, Lois, and daughters Nancy and Alice, I visited the spot. I found the hill-top plowed up and the stones removed. As we were leaving I saw a small pile of stones near the gateway and immediately recognized the one that Jim Swango had pointed out. I asked Mr. H. C. Taulbee, a tenant, for permission to take the stone away, and received it, and now have the stone for safe-keeping, and think it should be reset in a permanent position back in Hazel Green. There are a few letters on it that seem to have been part of the word "ohare" and that is the spelling of the name as "Mical ohare" used it in his own handwriting on papers relative to the marriage license of his daughter Caty at the Courthouse at Nicholasville.

Recently, November 16, 1948, with my father, Deck D. Baber, I went to Hazel Green and located the burial hill-top as follows: Standing at the entrance of the present Hazel Green Cemetery, I faced myself towards the town; thence turned left and traveled easterly about one-fourth mile on the street in front of the cemetery and the road leaving town, to a lane on the right hand, southwardly; thence south in the 24' lane about 375 feet to a gateway; thence south southwest about 100 feet to the highest level part of the hill-top. This is within a few feet of the location of the grave of Michael O'Hair.

At this spot I took a compass bearing: S 45 E a barn; N 85 W a corner of a gray school building; N 45 W about 80 rods to the town cemetery.

 

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More specifically I measured with chain and compass: N 20 E 100 feet to lane corner post; N 90 W 70 feet to a fence; S 55 E 64 feet to electric line pole #63. No corrections made for declinations of compass but assumed bearings were reasonably correct for the purpose.

From this hill-top burial place we went to Trent, Ky. and in­terviewed William O'Hair, who was born 1897. He said that he had been told by his father, Michael, where Old Michael was buried. He took us to the same hill-top as described above but did not point out the same spot for the grave site.

Later in the same day Mrs. W. E. Bach of Lexington told me she recently had been in Hazel Green and that Mr. H. C. Taulbee had taken her back of his house and shown where had been an old graveyard. This is the same location.

Therefore: from the foregoing family traditions, supported by the evidence, and all circumstances, there can be no doubt but that Michael O'Hair is buried near the center of the hill-top on the hill or elevation just to the east of Hazel Green.

What could be more fitting for the eternal resting place of this emigrant, soldier, pioneer and American?

(Signed) Adin Baber

Adin Baber, Surveyor

Subscribed and sworn to before me, a Notary Public in and for the County

of Edgar and State of Illinois this 30 day of Nov. 1948.

(Signed) J. Frank Gough. Notary Public

(Seal)