contains two cemeteries. The smallest contains the graves of the early
Little and Stinson families with more than 20 burials, is along the Rock
Hawk Trail, and can be seen from the park road. The second cemetery,
also along the Rock Hawk Trail, which has more than 100 graves, was
probably a slave cemetery originally and later included burials not only
of Little family members but also of other area residents as well.
The majority of the graves in the larger cemetery have no marker.
This is not unusual for 19th century plots, since permanent markers
were relatively expensive.
Without the process of embalming, it was necessary to bury the dead
as soon as possible. It was usual for the family to keep the deceased in
the home from the time of death until burial. If the family was well-to-do,
the body was placed in the formal parlor or on the table in the dining
room for viewing. Most of the time the body was laid in its own bed,
sometimes the same bed in which the person had been born. The
custom of "sitting up" overnight with the dead was common, the night in
question usually being that separating the day of death from the day of
Mortality rates were high in the 19th century, particularly for women
and children. Childbirth was often a fatal experience, since many
women died of childbed fever in the days before antibiotics. Children
also died in large numbers from childhood diseases not adequately
treatable by the medicine of the time. The Little family, like their
neighbors, dealt with death up close. It was an integral part of their