Galena Daily Gazette
24 March 1899

Lies in the Potter’s Field

A Man Who in His Prosperous Days Gave Land for a Cemetery Buried by the County

The Land Was for Mt. Hope Cemetery in East Galena Which is One of the Oldest Graveyards in the County

About a dozen able-bodied Galena citizens who have relatives and friends interred in Mt. Hope cemetery in East Galena, went out there the other day and gave the place a thorough cleaning up, of which it was much in need.

This is one of the oldest graveyards in the county, having been established away back in the forties, more than fifty years ago. The cemetery comprises an acre of land which was donated for that purpose by a Mr. Bayliss, who at that time owned nearly one thousand acres of land in that vicinity. This calls to mind the irony and cruelty of fate in its dealing with men in some instances. As time wore on apace adversity overtook Mr. Bayliss, and the vicissitudes of fortune finally stranded him and landed him high and dry in the county house where his death occurred about fifteen or eighteen years ago. Herein lies the unkindest cut of all: His remains were interred in the potter’s field adjoining the county house instead of their finding repose from the storms and calms of terrestrial life in the silent city of the dead, the existence of which was made possible through his own liberality. It was, indeed, a shabby requital for the many kindly deeds of the deceased old man whose friends were numerous, but who were not made aware of his demise until after he had been buried in the potter’s half acre. A few years after his death it was proposed by neighbors and friends to remove the remains to the Mt. Hope cemetery, but so slack at that time was the method of conducting the affairs of the county burial ground that his grave could not be located with any degree of certainty, and the project was abandoned.

Soon after the donation of the land for cemetery purposes, another acre was secured along side of it on which was erected a brick building, divided into two parts, one of which was used for church purposes and the other as a school house. That part devoted to religion has long been in disuse, but it was only four or five years ago that a new school house was built and the ancient structure given over entirely to the use of owls, bats and rats.