Thursday, October 27, 2016

Grave Robbery 1962

Vincennes Sun Commercial May 6, 1962
A Grave Found Open near George Field

A grave more than 100 years old has been opened in an abandoned Lawrence County Cemetery and the contents removed by unknown persons, it was disclosed Saturday. Two young Lawrence County men found the broken grave several days ago in the old Howard Cemetery, northeast of Lawrenceville. A headstone nearby identified it as the grave of Barbary  Claycomb, wife of Adam Claycomb, who died on November 21, 1852 at the age of 27.

There was no explanation whatever of who opened the grave. It apparently had been opened several weeks. Tom Pinkstaff, 24 of Lawrenceville Route Three, and James Berry, 24, of Lawrenceville, were in the area on Saturday, April 28, looking for mushrooms, when they walked into the cemetery and found a hole from which it appeared a coffin had been removed.

Several days later they told Gene Emmons of the Emmons Funeral Home of the find.

Yesterday Emmons and others went to the Howard Cemetery and found the appearance of a newly opened grave. The hole is five or 6 feet deep.

The cemetery is located along the north edge of George Field, and is roughly northeasterly from the northeast hangar of the field. It is overgrown with brush.

When Emmons and others inspected the site of the grave Saturday, it was after the wind and rain of last Monday night, and some of the evidences of the recent reopening had been of obliterated but the hole still is there.

Harry Talbot, city clerk of Lawrenceville and who has the authority to issue permits to reopen graves, said that no application for such a permit has been received recently.


Lawrence County Sheriff Eddie Ryan, told of the discovery of the hole in the ground, said he too checked and found that no permit for opening the grave had been issued, and said that Monday morning he will start a search of County records to check the burial there. He said he is looking for relatives of the Claycomb family.