There are thousands of stories buried in Normal Hill Cemetery. On Independence Day some of Lewiston’s early settlers will return to share a few.The Twin Rivers Genealogy Society will play host to the second annual Walking with Ancestors tour 9-11:30 a.m. Wednesday at the cemetery. Society members will portray 10 people who died between 1899 and 1941 and are buried on Normal Hill.
These aren’t well-known community members but average people, says society President Betty Meloy.
“The goal is so that people will know everybody in the cemetery has a story,” says Meloy, who will portray her grandmother Mary Thiessen and speak about Mary’s husband, Gus, a German immigrant who farmed 400 acres in Tammany and at one time ran the freight stop at McCormack Ridge in Nez Perce County.
The event is free. Dressed in period clothing, volunteers will portray people as they were. Each presentation will be five to eight minutes and people are encouraged to bring lawn chairs for seating at each grave site. The last tour starts at 10:45 a.m. and ends before the start of the Old Fashioned Fourth of July celebration at Pioneer Park.
Patricia Van Buren will portray her grandmother Anna Marshall.
“My grandfather was married twice before he married her,” Van Buren says. “He was married to her sister first. It was kind of a different family.”
Society members delved into death notices, obituaries and census records to research their characters.
The event will include a booth with genealogy research methods for those interested in exploring their family tree. There will also be information about tombstone care and interpreting gravestone symbols.
Ancestors to be portrayed are: Anna Marshall, Sylvadore Miranda, Dominic Agost, Emery S. Whitcomb, Sgt. Alonzo Blythe, Isaac Mounce, William H. Wolf, Gus Thiessen, Nicholas Konen and Cpl. Orville Martin.
if you go
What: Walking with Ancestors
When: 9-11:30 a.m. Wednesday, July 4
Where: Normal Hill Cemetery, Lewiston