While graves and gravestones in the cemetery of Red River each have their own story, information is known about certain ones. Approximately 400 are buried in this cemetery, many born as early as 1728. There are relatives of George Rogers Clark, two generals and a colonel from the War of 1812, several Revolutionary War soldiers and Confederate soldiers, and one veteran of the Battle of Waterloo. One tombstone as the 23rd Psalm inscribed in Gaelic, the ancient language of Scotland.
The self guided tour of the cemetery works like this: You have a brochure of the graves. As you wander the cemetery you’ll find numbered markers by certain tombstones. Match the number by the grave with the information in the brochure. You can read some interesting facts about each individual. Also please take time to notice and read other monuments and tombstones as well.
1. An unmarked grave – SOYARS
This young boy died of rabies. He was locked up in a log barn on the Link farm west of the cemetery where he had to die because there was no treatment available for rabies back then.
2. McMurtry Sons
There were three sons born to J.L and Sue McMurtry that were born without skin and died shortly afterwards. On the left is the infant son born 10 July 1892-died 20 July 1892, 10 days after birth. To the right is another infant son, born 23 June 1895-died 28 June 1895, 5 days after birth. In the row of tombstones in front of above, take a few steps to the right and there is another infant son born 9 April 1896-died 14 April 1896, only 5 days after birth. (also see #22)
3. Evan McPherson 1787 – 1849
Born in the Highlands of Scotland in 1787, migrated to this country in 1809, and died 1849. This is one of the most fascinating and interesting tombstones here. Please look at all four sides. One side of the tombstone is inscribed with the 23rd Psalm in Gaelic. Also another side has this inscription: Stop, mortal as you are passing by, as you are now so once was I, As I am now so must you be, Remember that you too must die.
4. William McPherson Nov 14 1805 – Aug 24 1867
Born in Scotland and died in Logan County, Kentucky. Take notice that there is a combination tombstone with his wife Cathrene A. McPherson, born 1 March 1829-died 21 January 1916. His older tombstone is to the right of this one. His tombstone reads: His toils are past, his work is done, he found the fight, the victory won.
5. William Warner 1820 – March 26 1877
Died in his 57th year, born in Ireland.
6. Robert E. Townsend March 24 1845 – March 20 1863
One of many of the the country’s sons who laid down their lives in defense of their Southland. “Fell at Milton, Tennessee, March 20, 1863, fighting in defense of the constitutional rights of his native south.“ He was 4 days away from being 18 years old.
7. Sarah Ann Townsend Feb 26 1826 – Sept 28 1889
She is the wife of Dr. R.J. Townsend, daughter of Dr. P.R. and Elizabeth Beauchamp, born at Bowling Green, KY., married 23 December 1845, died at Adairville, KY. Take time to read the two sides of her monument.
8. Gilson P. Ewing April 27 1807 – Feb 16 1879
About 2 miles south of the meeting house is the site of the old home of his father, General Robert C. Ewing. Gilson built a beautiful old brick residence now standing on the site.
Directions to the house: Turn right onto Route 663, go 1.8 miles, turn left onto Loy Moore Rd., go 1.4 miles to a T. Turn right and you will see the house on the right.
9. General Robert Ewing 1790 – July 11 1832
Died in the 73rd year of his age, born in Virginia, removed to west Tennessee in 1781. His distinguished career included service as a general during the Revolutionary War, member of the North Carolina legislature (1787-89), member of the State House from Logan Co. in 1799, an officer of the War of 1812, State Senator (and speaker) in 1817, and one of Kentucky’s ten electors in the presidential elections of 1809, 1813, and 1817. In the late 1700′s Ewing was instrumental in the building of the Red River Church. General Ewing’s brother, Rev. Finis Ewing, came to Logan Co. in 1794 and settled near the Old Red River Meeting House and was active in the Revival of 1800 and was one of the founding fathers of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church.
10. Jane McLean Ewing Dec 17 1769 – Jan 6 1847
Wife of General Robert Ewing, married on 4 July 1787. She was the daughter of Ephraim McLean, an early Presbyterian Minister who took part in the Revival of 1800. Her stone reads as follows: Mrs. Jane Ewing the consort of him who is entombed by her side was born on the 17th of December 1769 and died on the 6th of January 1847. She was a devoted and faithful wife an affectionate mother a kind mistress and a benevolent neighbor and died in the triumph of the Christian faith that she had professed for more than 10 years.
11. Thomas Jefferson Townsend Dec 28 1782 – May 14 1851
Son of Thomas Townsend, Sr. and Anaphileda Watson Townsend. He gave an adjacent plot of land on which the second church was built, known as the Red River Cumberland Presbyterian Church (white frame building). It was located where the present meeting house stands today.
12. Dr. R.J. Townsend Aug 1807 – July 23 1849
Died of cholera.
13. Anaphileda Watson Townsend 1730 – ?
Consort of Thomas Townsend, Sr., born 1730 in Virginia. Her husband was born in Edinburgh, Scotland in 1732 (the year of George Washington’s birth), came to America at age 18 and fought in the French and Indian War and the Revolutionary War. He died in Green, South Carolina in 1818 at the age of 88. Her grave is in the oldest section of the cemetery. Her two-story log home is a short distance west of the cemetery and is now the home of D.L. Robey, Jr.. Their son, Thomas Townsend, gave an adjacent plot of land on which the second church was built know as the Red River Cumberland Presbyterian Church (white frame building) that stood where the present meeting house stands today.
Directions to the log home: Turn right onto Route 663, go .8 miles, house on the right.
14. George Washington Ewing Nov 29 1808 – May 20 1888
Born in Logan Co.. He was a member of the Confederate Congress in Richmond.
15. John Boyd Aug 7 1780 – Sept 11 1848
He was an elder in the Red River Cumberland Presbyterian Church (white frame building). To the left of his tombstone is his consort (wife), Susan Boyd, born 27 January 1788-died 31 July 1853; also member of the same church.
16. Rev J.M. Penick June 16 1809 – Sept 8 1877
One of the great preachers of this section in pre-civil war days.
17. Jan Paisley White
Wife of John White, (Revolutionary Soldier) Born 1737-Died 1804.
18. Robert Paisley 1739 – Aug 4 1828
Died in the 89th year of his life. “He was for many years a respectable member and Elder in the Presbyterian Church.” He was a Captain in the Revolutionary War. His wife, Margaret Paisley, is buried on his right. The oldest date distinguishable is 1799 when she, consort of Robert Paisley, departed this life, aged about 53 years.
19. Richard Henry Hayes June 16 1823 – Aug 23 1892
Born in Mecklenburg County, Virginia. (He was a wagoner in Civil War-removed the dead from battlefields.) Hayes families came to Logan County between 1875-1880.
20. William Henry Warren Nov 19 1835 – Dec 3 1912
Civil War Confederate Soldier. Born in Burkesville, Ky.; moved to Tennessee, age 11; enlisted at Livingston, Tn. 11 November 1861; Died 3 December 1912. His wife, Perilla Christian, died at Orlinda, Tn., from 1918 flu epidemic, buried at Orlinda in a family cemetery. Because of inclement weather, she couldn’t be brought to the Red River Cemetery.
21. Joseph E. Oslin May 2 1877 – Oct 5 1943
As a young boy he brought wood and built the fire in the church stove at the Red River Cumberland Presbyterian Church (white frame building). Oslin families came to Logan County between 1875-1880.
22. Magnolia L. McMurtry 1900 – 1941
Daughter of J.L. and Sue McMurtry, born with one layer of skin. Three of her brothers were born without skin and died shortly after birth and are buried on the south end of the cemetery. (Also see #2)
23. Marion A. Brown Jan 26 1878 – June 27 1973
Kentucky Pvt. USA, Spanish American War.
24. Ted Gunderson June 23 1924 – Aug 20 1990
His sons Tracy, Garrett, and Guy Gunderson built the present meeting house.
25. General Archibald M. Campbell Mar 6 1784 – Sept 8 1829
Gen. Campbell married Elizabeth McCurdy. He served as a private in the War of 1812. In 1825 he was a Colonel in the State Militia. On his grave he is called a General. His other two brothers, John G. and William F., are buried nearby.
26. Private John Jefferson Grayson 1789 - 1863
Born 1789 in Albemarle County, Virginia-Died 1863. He married Susannah Britt 1812. By 1813 or 1814, he was drafted into the Virginia Militia and served as a private in Captain Lange's Infantry Regiment under the command of Cols. McDaniel and Spangler. After the war he crossed the Cumberland Gap for the west bringing his wife and two daughters. They settled first in Barren County, then moved to Logan County where the remainder of their 10 children were born.
Please let us know if you have relatives buried in this cemetery. It is the wish of the Red River Meeting House and Cemetery Association to have a record of your genealogy that can help other people who are researching your family name.