Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Tombstone Tuesday - Washington Becham's Deceitful Tombstone

This tombstone stands in the Old Bethel Methodist Church cemetery, in Crawford County, Georgia and it is pretty much wrong.  I should note that this is not the original tombstone.  When Wash Becham died, a jug-shaped tombstone was put up for him.  I've seen pictures but don't have any.  That was apparently stolen or taken away at some point and this new one put in.

So, the errors - 1. There is no record that I have been able to find that actually has his first name as George, despite how common George Washington is as a name.  Every census has either W. or Washington.  His Confederate muster rolls, confederate pottery contract, pension application, various legal decisions and his original tombstone all had Washington or Wash.   2. While I hate to insist on any consistency on surnames, particularly in a largely illiterate area, the fact remains that he and his family used "Becham" or occasionally the more standard "Beckham".  Beacham appears on part of his pension application but other parts have Becham.  3. According to his obit, unlikely to have been published 3 years after the fact, he died in 1915 rather than 1912.  

He did serve, however briefly, in the 57th GA Infantry and he was probably born in 1832.

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