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Van Nort Graveyard

Front Royal, Warren County, Virginia

In February 1999 I had occasion to be in Northern Virginia and on the 15th I made a trip to Front Royal to do some research.  Among other things, I was hoping to find the graves of some of the Lehews who first settled in the area. Many are said to have been buried on the land Peter owned on "Happy Creek" but to my knowledge no one knows exactly where they are.   I visited the Warren County Heritage society and inquired about the locations of old graveyards.  They were only aware of the Prospect Hill Cemetery a check of which revealed it wasn't what I was after.  Next I checked with the local mortician who said there was an old cemetery on the hills overlooking the river. He said the guys that took care of Prospect Hill also did some mowing there and would know how to get there.  Sure enough, the maintenance crew at Prospect Hill knew about the cemetery and said there was a Lehew grave there.  However, they also said there were only 3 or 4 graves there and the place was hard to get to as it was way back in the woods with only the faintest path leading there.  Of course my interest was really tweaked by now and so I got directions and was off.

Well they weren't kidding.  As directed I parked behind the middle school and found the path. I walked about a mile through the woods, traveling up and down hills and across the creek never being quite sure of the path as it was overgrown and barely discernable.  As I fought my way through the undergrowth I sure felt sorry for those maintenance men dragging mowing equipment, weed eaters, and such down this path.  Finally I spied a stone wall through the trees and sure enough it was a graveyard.

I am sad to say the place was in bad shape.  The stones were broken and vandals and mother had really taken their toll.  The photos below show what I saw.

Approaching the graveyard

Photo approaching the graveyard

The wall is the first indication there is something man made in these woods.

Looking Over The Wall

Photo looking over the wall

Surveying Inside The Walls

Photo 1 of surveying inside the walls.

Photo 2 of surveying inside the walls.

Photo 3 of surveying inside the walls.

Gravestone of Ann Van Nort

Gravestone of Ann Van Nort.

Ann Van Nort
Daughter of [missing] and Eda
Wife of Eli Lehew.
Of Hampshire Co. Virginia
Born October 8, 180[missing]
[missing]ed October [missing]

Gravestone of Jacob Van Nort

Gravestone of Jacob Van Nort.

[Jacob] Van Nort
January 1, 1777
November 7, 1861

Gravestone of Eda Lehew

Gravestone of Eda Lehew.

Eda Lehew
Wife of Jacob Van Nort.
Born May 12, 1780
Died May 23, 1857
Blessed are the pure in heart
for they shall see God.


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