The Peter O'Neal Cemetery Page

 


The Peter O'Neal Cemetery 
The Peter O'Neal Family Cemetery Photos
Cousins Glenn Nave and Kenneth  O'Neal admiring the view
Headstone of Peter O'Neal with Service Marker
Headstone of  Peter O'Neal
Headstone of  Sarah 
Sparks O'Neal
Remnants of an 
Unknown Headstone
Remnants of an 
Unknown Headstone
Remnants of an 
Unknown Headstone

The Peter O'Neal Family Cemetery is about 1/2 mile from The Old Frame Church. Park your car at the church, walk east about 150 yards to Old Mountain Road. If there is no sign, Old Mountain Road is a gravel lane on your left side, going north. Walk down the road about 100 feet and you'll see a grass lane veering to your right. (East) As you start down the grass farm lane you will begin going up a steep incline between a tree line. As soon as you clear the tree line, you'll find yourself on the edge of a huge grassy farm field. Look toward the hilltop to your northeast and you may be able to see the flagpole. If you can't see it, just start walking toward the hilltop.

Standing atop that grassy knoll gave me an eerie feeling. Not a scary feeling, but something more akin to a feeling of familiarity. An ancient feeling of  oneness, of belonging. A good feeling, I must admit. You see, while I was born in Pennsylvania, I was removed at a very early age and raised in Ohio. My parents took us to visit cousins occasionally, but I never quite felt like I could call Pennsylvania "home."

How different it was here, standing amidst the stones of my O'Neal ancestors, on property trodden by their very feet hundreds of years ago. On soil turned by a father and his sons, on the same hilltop where that father, my G-G-G-G-Great Grandfather, took his sons and shared his dreams and hopes for their futures.

They are dust now, but standing there on a rainy, overcast afternoon I could almost hear their long lost whispers lingering on the gentle breeze. And most importantly, I realized that their dreams and hopes for the future didn't die with their bodies. Their spirit, their memories, their aspirations and their genes still live through us, their descendants. Their blood still courses through our veins.  I have never been prouder in my life to be a Family Historian than I was at that moment standing there on a lonely hilltop in a remote rural area of Pennsylvania.

Cousin Kenneth O'Neal broke my reverie and pointed out the area where it was believed the Peter O'Neal homestead had stood so many years ago. We vowed to return, and to get permission from the landowner to look for the old home site.

If you would like to visit the Peter O'Neal Cemetery, show up at the Annual O'Neal Reunion on the last Saturday of July at The Old Frame Church, in Cleareville, Pennsylvania. Weather permitting they hold a memorial ceremony complete with a musket loader salute and taps.