|This photo taken in 2007 shows the Mickler Family Cemetery now in the front yard of someone's home. This family cemetery was once located on the William J. Mickler homestead. (Photo 2007 by Jeff Cannon- ©Copyright)|
|Among one of the most unique cemeteries in Hernando County is
the Mickler Cemetery, which was once the homestead of William J.
Mickler; who the cemetery was named after. The Mickler Cemetery
was established in 1884 pioneer resident Martha A. Mickler passed
away and was interred here, behind the home that had built by her husband William J.
There is very little known about William J. and Martha and this may
be because of their early deaths in 1884.
William J. Mickler settled in Hernando County, with his family, sometime in 1868, upon arrival he built his family a home in which they could live. By 1869 William was engaged in the occupation of farming, like most Hernando County residents, and he had acquired 10 head of hog. According to the 1870 Federal Census for Hernando County, William J. Mickler age 38, was the head of household with his wife, Martha age 28, who was at home with their children Thomas age 10, Emily age 6, John age 4, Philip age 3 and Anna who was born in May of 1870 and was one month old at the time of the census. By 1872 William J. Mickler had acquired 1 horse, which he likely used for travel purposes.
William J. Mickler was not just a farming family man but he also cared for the needs of his community and early educational needs of the children thereof. According to Hernando County School Board records, in 1877 William J. Mickler served as a trustee of the Wooley Pond School, which was likely located in his neighborhood. Unfortunately we do not know if Mickler had served as a trustee prior to 1877 since all records were destroyed in the courthouse fire of the same year. Its believed that the Mickler children attended the Wooley Pond School where they were taught by Mrs. M.P. Bellama. These early school were supported in part by the community.
In the mid to late 1870's William J. Mickler made homestead application to the U.S. Government for the property that he had settled. Since William had already built a home, he simply needed to make good use of his property for five year before receiving full title and deed. William continued to farm his property while he and his wife continued to raise their family. By 1880 the Mickler family had the addition of two more children, Willie born in 1876 and Howell who was born in 1879. Mickler continued to build his farm and while he took a few years off from his school trustee position, he had assumed his position again by 1880. After taking his school trustee position again in 1880, Mickler remained in his position until the 1883-84 school year; school trustees are not shown after 1884.
On August 07, 1884 William J. Mickler was stricken and lost his wife, Martha Ann Mickler. The nearest cemetery was either the Brooksville Cemetery or the Tucker Hill Cemetery, both being about three miles from the Mickler homestead. William made the decision that he would bury his wife on their homestead and behind the family home. Martha's body was prepared and then laid in the very ground that William tended to and cared for each day, perhaps this way William knew his wife would be watched over and taken care of. William gathered the children and the grief stricken family made a headstone, which they inscribed and erected to the memory of their "dearest mother".
Exactly one month after the death of Martha Ann Mickler, on September 07, 1894, William J. Mickler died. While we do not know the full circumstances of William J. Mickler's death its believed he passed away suddenly and perhaps from grief over the recent loss of his wife. Even in his last days William J. Mickler was serving his community and serving as a trustee of the Wooley Pond School as he is shown in school board records months prior to his death. This time is was the Mickler children who had to make the decisions. The Mickler children prepared their father's body and then buried him beside the fresh grave of Martha Mickler, behind the family home. Again the grief stricken family gathered and made a headstone, which they appropriately inscribed "Blessed Are The Dead Which Die In The Lord Yea From Hence Forth Their Works Do Follow Them." The stone was then erected on the grave of their dedicated and hard working father.
The Mickler children continued to live in the family home and they maintained their father's farm. At the time Emily Mickler was only 22 years old, while John Mickler was the young age of 17 and Philip only 15. These were the oldest Mickler children and they were probably responsible for the farm after the death of their parents, they also had to care for their younger brother's and sister's. On September 24, 1890 the orphaned children of William J and Martha Mickler received full title and deed to the 160 acre homestead that their father has settled and established years prior. According to the homestead deed the property was deeded to "John D. Mickler, Philip C. Mickler, Annie B. Mickler, Willie B. Mickler and Howell L. Mickler, minor orphaned children of Wm. J. Mickler, deceased." (Click here to view the 1890 Mickler homestead deed)
It is believed that William J. Mickler served in the Civil War under the Confederacy and a Florida company, however due to his early death is is nearly impossible to locate further records without the assistance of the Mickler Family. In 1929 the third and final burial would be made in the Mickler Family Cemetery, with the interment of Robert J. Mickler. We do not know the relation of Robert J. Mickler to William and Martha but we do know that Robert was a Confederate Veteran who served his duty during the Civil War. Robert J. Mickler had served with the Confederate States Army where he enlisted with Company D of the 10th Florida Infantry, his detailed service is unknown. After the Civil War, in 1874, Robert J. Mickler married to Mary E.M. Howell, according to one newspaper article. This was Mary Howell's second marriage as she had been previously married to Thomas B. Law until his death in 1870. Just like William and Martha Mickler, there is very little known about Robert J. Mickler. While we do know that Robert J. Mickler was laid to rest in the Mickler Cemetery, his grave was never marked and still today this grave remains unmarked and only recorded in some obscured records.
While Robert J. Mickler was the last known interment in the Mickler Cemetery it is believed that the cemetery contains at least one other burial. Just like Robert Mickler's grave the fourth burial in the Mickler Cemetery was also unmarked and therefore we do not know who this fourth burial was. The cemetery contains two large markers on the graves of William and Martha, there are two smaller markers in the cemetery that appear to be foot stones. It is likely that these two smaller markers are foot stones marking the grave of Robert J. and the unknown burial, the larger stones were likely removed or are currently buried.
Today the Mickler Family Cemetery is located in the middle of a rural and farm area of Hernando County, however the Mickler Cemetery is located in the front yard of someone's home. There are only the three known and documented graves within the Mickler Cemetery, which seem to be fairly well cared for. Like any small family cemetery, the Mickler Cemetery is always in the risk of development with the ever increasing population of Florida. Until awareness and attention can be brought to these sites they will continued to be developed.
If you have any further information pertaining to the Mickler Family please contact page designer and historian/ author Jeff Cannon.
Copyright ©2008 by Jeff Cannon
|NOTE: In addition to the taking of a headstone
inscription reading we have also consulted a number of other records
including but not limited to cemetery research
by Mary Wilson, Florida Death Index*, Local Funeral Home Records, W.P.A. Records**, Unpublished Genealogical Society
Records, obituaries and newspaper articles. If we have an
obituary on file for someone listed we would be happy to provide a
copy upon request.
KEY FOR SYMBOLS
s/o - Son Of
d/o - Daughter Of
w/o - Wife Of
h/o - Husband Of
m/o- Mother of
ss/w- Side by Side With
MICKLER, Martha A. b. Feb. 1, 1837 d. August 7, 1884 (Sacred to the memory of- Dearest Mother Thou Hast Left Us Here Thy Loss We.... stone is broken and buried)
MICKLER, Robert J. b. 1845 d. 1929 (UNMARKED- h/o Mary E.M. Howell- deeded St. Anthony's Catholic Church property in 1909- CSA Company D of the 10th Florida Infantry)**
MICKLER, William J. b. Nov. 22, 1830 d. Sept. 7, 1884 (Sacred to the memory of- Blessed Are The Dead Which Die In The Lord Yea From Hence Forth Their Works Do Follow Them)