Morgan Tombstones, Bethany Cemetery

In Memory of
BILLINGSLEY MORGAN
Who departed this life
[Marc]h the 7th 1836
[in the —]th year of his age

Here is a pair of tombstones by the same extraordinary folk artist—and, because he actually signed one of them, we know his name: H. Savage. Both are badly damaged, but they form a pair side by side, so old Pa Pitt guesses that the illegible stone marks the resting place of Mrs. Billingsley Morgan. Unlike most Western Pennsylvania tombstones of the 1830s, these are handsomely carved in relief, much like the famous New England tombstones of the colonial era, but without the flying skulls.

Even this unusually artistic and ambitious stonecutter did not sketch out his lettering before beginning the inscription, so that he ran out of space for the name “MORGAN” on Billingsley Morgan’s tombstone.