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Patience is the theme for the Worthington Project. The GPR survey data is being processed. Because of the sensitive nature of this project, all efforts are being made to simply show the anomalies in the subsurface of the ground. Other GPR survey findings of similar cemetery projects can then be used to interpret what the anomalies are indicating. This can then be compared with the data collected from the cadaver dog search of the same area.
Another question that I am researching is the church that was near the cemetery. The gentleman who was interviewed at the beginning of this project said many times that the “old-timers said that there was a church near the cemetery.” Plat maps from the time period can give answers to whether there were buildings on a property. The library has the 1866, 1870 and 1890 plat maps of Defiance County. They are in the Local History room and the public can come and view them. They are also on the Defiance County Engineer’s website.
The library also owns a large, framed copy of the 1866 Defiance County Plat map and it is hanging on the wall near the public computers in the library.
Worthington owned the Southeast quadrant of Section 7. His name is written in that section. Also in that section are two squares and written is U B Ch. The squares indicate buildings. Ch is an abbreviation for church. This information is given in the “Explanations” or key to the Plat map.
U B Ch could be United Brethren Church or United Baptist Church, both of which were churches in the Midwest area in the mid to late 1800s. The other square could indicate an outbuilding, barn, house or any other type of building. We know from the WPA survey that was completed in the 1930s that the cemetery was located on the “Jennie Watson Farm.” The mid 1930s plat map does indicate that Jennie Watson owned the same southeast quadrant of section 7 that Worthington owned. She owned this land until her death in 1970.
Surveying land has an interesting history. The first instruments used were very rudimentary and allowed for great inaccuracies. George Washington and Thomas Jefferson were surveyors, to name a few. One of the first means of measuring was a metal chain called a “Gunter’s Chain.” There had to be a way to measure property and to map land for travel. Read more about that here.
In 1795 after the Greenville Treaty was signed, the United States acquired 2/3 of what is now Ohio. Colonel Israel Ludlow was one of a few certified surveyors that had been working in the East and continued into Ohio. He is credited with surveying much of the land. Before land could be purchased it needed to be surveyed for characteristics such as dwellings, trees, water, etc. and then a plat map created that shows the dimensions of each parcel of land. One such line colonel Ludlow surveyed went from the source of the Little Miami River to the Greenville Treaty Line and was named the Ludlow Line in 1804 by Congress.
A Pennsylvania native, he married and had 4 children with his wife Charlotte in Cincinnati. Sadly, he died at the young age of 38 from an illness in 1804. His family continued to live in the Ludlow Mansion. He was buried at the First Presbyterian Church of Cincinnati with Masonic Honors.