Southward-Magee Cemetery - Near Forestburg, TX
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member QuarrellaDeVil
N 33° 30.256 W 097° 34.313
14S E 632650 N 3708104
Quick Description: While there is today a fence to protect it, Southward-Magee Cemetery is overgrown, neglected, and damaged by past livestock intrusions. It is located off of Lanier Road, south of Forestburg, TX.
Location: Texas, United States
Date Posted: 11/19/2014 8:50:02 PM
Waymark Code: WMMXCM
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member ChapterhouseInc
Views: 0

Long Description:
To reach Southward-Magee, follow FM 1655 out of Forestburg. You'll want to follow Lanier Road to the east, so be aware that a loop of it branches off to the west. Follow Lanier until it begins to curve off to the east, towards a residence, where it will dead end. At that curve is a track, whose cattle guard you'll cross. (visit link) In about a third of a mile, you'll see the fence that encloses the cemetery, and there is a gate where you can park. There are no signs identifying the cemetery as such, and no grave markers are even visible from the road as of this posting.

Findagrave lists nineteen graves here. There could be more, and some of the markers are simple fieldstones lacking inscriptions. While "good condition" is a relative term, the headstones belonging to C.D. and Mary Box, James Graves, Florence Magee, John Scott Magee (the last burial here, in 1937) and Elizabeth Gibson Magee, Rosalie Magee, John Steadham, and an infant by the name of "Martien" are still serviceable. Susan B. Jones has a funeral home plate standing where her headstone once was, and Van Roberts, a Texas Ranger killed in what is still known as an "Indian Raid" in North Texas, has a more modern, flat granite marker to replace his vanished original headstone (which leaves James Graves as the person who technically has the oldest stone). Next to Mr. Roberts is the damaged faux crypt of his father, Stephen Roberts, who has been mistaken for another Stephen Roberts who was a veteran of the Battle of San Jacinto.

The faux crypts belonging to the Southwards have sustained the most damage, and they are virtually indecipherable without the assistance of Findagrave. The remains of the faux crypts for Iredell, William Homer, and Martha E. Southward are visible, and it is possible that James Southward shares the same grave/marker as his wife, Martha. (visit link)

The name "Southward" appears in Fannie Potter's ("Mrs. W.R. Potter") "History of Montague County," but unfortunately, no first names are given. She also provides an account of the murder of Van Roberts. In the fall of 1867, Lieutenant Roberts and a group of rangers were attending a church service in what is now Forestburg, when someone came in and announced that their horses were being stolen by natives ("Indians" in the parlance of the time). Roberts and his men pursued the thieves, but unfortunately, when the natives stood their ground after Roberts and companion, Alec Frasier, dismounted to fight them, the other rangers fled. Under attack, Frasier managed to escape, but Roberts was killed and scalped after giving as good as he got. Mrs. Potter concludes her narrative with "Today he is sleeping in the graveyard near John McGee's."
Earliest Burial: 7/29/1879

Latest Burial: 11/11/1937

Visit Instructions:
Take a photo of at least one grave marker and including a qualitative and quantitative description
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