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The Spiker Gazette
Oxford, WVVolume  11Issue  11November 2017
In this Issue:Introducing Robert Bradford
Visiting the Bradford Farm Family Cemetery


Introducing Robert Bradford

Written by:  Bobbi Spiker-Conley & Jim Bradford

     Our 5th great-grandfather, Robert Bradford, was born about 1730 in Ireland. He and his wife, Margaret (last name unknown) had four sons  and two daughters. (Their son, James, is our 4th great-grandfather.) Robert died in October 1802 at the age of 72. A transcription of his Will may be viewed here

     Robert and Margaret's exact burial locations are unknown but it is quite possible they are buried at the Bradford Farm Family Cemetery in Greene County, Pennsylvania. One of their descendants, Francis Robert Bradford, visited the family burying ground in 1950 and wrote the following (transcription provided courtesy USGenWeb by Bryan Bradford):


Robert (1857)

The cemetery is located on the land patendted in 1790 by James Bradford as "Long Hill" and is located on Bradford Run, a tributary of Dyer's Fork of Whiteley Creek, Whiteley Twp.,Greene Co., Penn.. There are graves in this cemetery which were either unmarked or the stones had been destroyed prior to taking the following record.

I have noted several deep depressions in the cemetery where no tombstone is in evidence. I have been unsuccessful in locating the burial place of Robert and Margaret Bradford, parents of James Bradford, the patentee of "Long Hill".

I have assumed they may be buried in this cemetery.

                       Francis Robert Bradford

The record was taken in 1950:

Bradford, James R., Died,Apr. 17,1880, aged 61 yrs.

Bradford, Elizabeth(Pipes),died, Mar. 31,1905,aged 79yrs.,8mo.,5da.
          infant son of James and Elizabeth, no dates.

Bradford, Jemima, dau. of James and Elizabeth,died Apr. 8,1858,aged 6mo.

Bradford, Nancy,dau. of James and Elizabeth,died, mar.17,1858,aged

Bradford, Rinehart,son of James and Elizabeth,died Mar.12,1858,aged

Bradford, Robert, son of James and Elizabeth,died, Sept. 23,1854, aged

Bradford, William,dated not legible.

Bradford, Jacob, died Sept. 6,1861, aged 60yrs.,2mo.,29da.

Bradford, Charlotte, wife of Jacob, died Aug.25,1862,aged 57yrs.,2da.

Bradford, Robert,died Nov.12,1857,aged 66yrs.,10mo.24da.

Bradford, Nancy(Wells),died Sept. 14,1856,aged 62yrs.,8mo.,4da.

Bradford, James,died Apr. 18,1822,aged 68yr.,3mo.,18da., (Rev.WarVet)

Bradford, Barbara,wife of James,died Mar.10,1816,aged 51yrs.,15da.

Bradford, William,son of James and Barbara,died Feb.13,1825,aged

Bradford, Hannah Martha, dau. of James M. and Anna,died Oct. 30,1854,aged

Shull, Nancy,wife of Jonathan Shull,died Apr. 19,1855,aged 27yr.,7mo.13da.

Field stones with crudely cut initals also were legible as follows:
E.S., J.B., H.M.B., J.B., R.B.

Nancy (1856)

Elizabeth (1905)

Jemima & infant (1858)

Rinehart & Nancy (1858)

James R (1880)

Robert (1854)

Hanna Martha (1854)

     Many of the stones cataloged in this list appear on the website, Find a Grave. They had been submitted by another descendant, Jim Bradford. I reached out to him and here's what he told me:


     "I became interested in my Genealogical history after I retired in 2008 - never had time while working. My Dad passed on a book to me that was a hand-written account of the Bradford tree by a Great Uncle Francis Robert Bradford. In that book was a description of the Bradford Family Cemetery in Greene County (Pennsylvania) with a list of tombstones taken in the 1950’s.

     "So, my brother John & I took a day to visit Greene County in search of that cemetery. Since the book listed no address, we started at the Township office and started asking questions. We were told there was an old Cemetery a few miles away. After a hike to the top of a hill, we found a cemetery, but it was the Guthrie Cemetery. I did find a (marker for) Elizabeth Guthrie Bradford who died at age 16 and was the first wife of my relative James R. I took photos & listed all of them on Find-a-Grave. 

    "We then started driving around and came across a road named Bradford Run - so we started knocking on doors and was told of an old Cemetery up the road on Pitcock Road. We could see it from the road and went to the farm house and met the owner of the land - John VanDruff - who (confirmed) the cemetery was the Bradford Cemetery and (said he) really appreciated us coming to talk with him first. We became friends. His grandmother was a Bradford.

     "He said the gate on the Cemetery came open one year and the cows had trampled and broken some of the tombstones. Right then I became the 'official caretaker.' After all, it was my family dating back to early 1800’s.

     "My brother and I made several trips resetting tombstones, clearing the land, painting the fence, and repairing the gate. Since I live in Indiana most of the time, and only get to PA to visit wife’s relatives, we needed to find someone to help me with the maintenance. John (VanDruff) introduced me to a woman that maintains the Fairall Cemetery less than a mile away (she is also a distant cousin.) She keeps the weeds down and I pay her monthly out of my own pocket."

John Wesley Bradford leveled the children's monument (inset.)

Jim Bradford made this sign for the gate.
  "In March/April 1858, Dysentery swept through the Bradford Farm and claimed the lives of Nancy, age 10, Rinehart, age 5, Jemima, age 1, and an unnamed newborn -- sparing my great-grandfather, John Gordon, or I would not be writing this today. I suspect that four of these fieldstones are of these children, and when James R Bradford's wife died in 1905, she had the large (four-sided pillar) tombstone erected honoring them."  

     Jim now shares his DNA results, photos, histories and other discoveries on his newly created Facebook group called "Bradford Descendants DNA Plus." Drop by soon and meet some more of your cousins.


All original images courtesy of Jim Bradford.



Submitted by Katie Shaffer:  Avery Linda Shaffer was born this morning (Nov. 3, 2017) at 8:25. It was a scary and difficult pregnancy, but this little girl is healthy!  We are definitely blessed!