|Attendees of the 2013 Lamb Family Reunion|
A Focus on Genealogy
The reunion kicked off on Friday with a gathering at the George Coon Public Library in Princeton, with many cousins meeting for the first time there. Judy Boaz, director of the library, shared the interesting and storied past of the library. After her speech, the group moved next door to the Glenn E. Martin Genealogy Library for an afternoon of research and a glimpse into its collection.
Following genealogy research at the library, Toni Watson, Caldwell County clerk, welcomed the group at the records room at the Caldwell County Courthouse where staff had graciously pulled several documents and records relating to the Lamb family. Renowned Western Kentucky genealogist and historian Brenda Joyce Jerome, a certified genealogist, was on hand to assist family members with record searches. On Friday night, nineteen attendees gathered at Adams Breezy Hill Restaurant for dinner and fellowship.
On Saturday morning, more than 40 gathered at the Lamb Cemetery at Claxton to dedicate a new tombstone for John and Mary Clayton-Lamb. In early 2013, the family gathered donations from Lamb family members across the country to erect a new stone in their memory. Their original tombstones have faded to near illegibility, so descendants decided to act to keep the flame of their memory alive through placing the new granite marker.
The marker includes the birth and death dates of John and Mary, and on the back lists all of their twelve children, as well as their children’s birth and death year. On the front, the family inscribed: “Memorial Lovingly Erected by Descendants – 2013.”
A Historic Cemetery
|Marker for the Lamb Cemetery in Caldwell Co., KY|
|New stone for John and Mary (Clayton) Lamb (front)|
|New stone for John and Mary (Clayton) Lamb (back)|
The ceremony to unveil the two new stones began with musical selections on bagpipes by Paul Thompson, known as “The Town Piper.” After his renditions of songs to celebrate the lives of John and Mary, two of their descendants, Matthew T. Patton of Johns Creek, Ga., and Linda Lamb Monticelli of Plymouth, Mich., uncovered the stones for the crowd. The ceremony closed with “Amazing Grace” on the bagpipes.
From there, the family moved to the Princeton Tourist Welcome Center for a Southern-style lunch and an afternoon of visiting. A 64-page booklet (including welcome letters from dignitaries like Sen. Rand Paul and Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear) was given to all attendees. On display were several documents and maps: the petition written for the Lenape Indians by the Lamb family’s ancestor Robert Longshore in 1681; accounts audited file for Longshore Lamb’s service in the Revolutionary War; the American flag that was flown over the U.S. Capitol in 2009 for Revolutionary War Patriot Longshore Lamb; several maps showing where the family’s ancestors lived from the 1600s through the early 1800s; and two large family tree charts showing four generations of descendants, one for Thomas Lamb and Alice Longshore, and the other for Longshore Lamb and Sarah Lee.
The guest speaker of the afternoon was Brenda Joyce Jerome, who presented a captivating talk on tombstone epitaphs. She provided examples of various epitaphs and carvings from tombstones, including cautionary passages like the one engraved on Mary Lamb’s original stone in the Lamb cemetery. It warns passers-by that they, too, should prepare to face a fate of death.
With sunny skies and comfortable weather throughout the entire weekend, the family relished reuniting with cousins across the country and sparking new friendships with cousins whom they met for the first time.
The next Lamb family reunion is tentatively scheduled for Oct. 2015.