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Durham County North Carolina Cemeteries

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192    JOHNSTON, WILLIAM FAMILY

      Location - off of Sawmill Creek Parkway and north of Snowhill Road in north Durham county.

      Coordinates: 36d 06m 24.4s N; 78d 51m 32.0s W Click here for Google maps

      Directions: take Sawmill Creek Pkwy north from Snowhill Rd. After about 1800 feet there should be a gate to the right. The landowner and the Trading Path Association appear to have set up an easement allowing people interested in visiting the site to use the historic trading path road to access it. You will probably need a GPS device or a good map to find the gravesite. Take a right off the trading path into the woods several hundred feet beyond the abandoned barns before the road drops in elevation. Follow the edge of the slight ridge to the grave which now has several strings of orange tape hanging above.

      Other facts and notes about the cemetery:
      Reputed to be the oldest marked grave in Durham county this one grave marker probably denotes a site where more than one Johnston family member is buried. William Johnston owned a store and plantation later known as Snowhill on the Indian trading path. In his will Johnston provided money for a marker to be erected on his grave "...purchase and erect a plain but decent monument to the memory of my late beloved wife and children who are interred at the Burying Place on my plantation at Little River in the county of Orange...I wish to be there interred." Though he also stipulated that he wished a one acre plot around the grave to be used as a family graveyard, it seems unlikely that additional burials took place as his daughter and family left for Kentucky early in the 19th century.

      Surveyed by Mitch Fraas in June 2008.


  1. Johnston, Ann   (b. 1727 - d. 1769)
      • Wife of William Johnston
  2. Johnston, Children   (b. - d. )
      • Five unnamed children of William and Ann Johnston
  3. Johnston, William   (b. 1735 - d. 3 May 1785)
      • To the memory of William Johnston and Ann his Wife. A worthy pair. The monument is erected by Walter and Amelia Alves. She died in 1769 aged 42 years He died May the 3rd 1785 Aged 48 years. Here also lie interred five of their Children who died very young.


Web page updated 23 December 2015


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