The seven tombstones on the Cumberland
Lodge No. 8 Lot are for people who died between
1847 and 1861. There were 29 burials on this lot
between 1846 and 1922. With the new replacement
tombstone for Washington Cooper, who died in
1871, there are now 21 people who do not have
tombstones on the Masonic Lot in 2008. No
burials have occurred since 1922.
Born 1796 and died September 25, 1847. He died
at age 52 of “dropsey” which is today identified
as congestive heart failure. On his monument was
“He was an honest man. The noblest work of God.”
On his tombstone, Frederick Smith was identified
“Sailor” and “The first rigger on Capitol Hill.”
The cornerstone was laid for the new State
Capitol in Nashville in 1845. Three years into
the construction, in February 1848, Frederick
Smith, first rigger, died of spasms.
A Philadelphia architect William Strickland won
the competition to design the State Capitol.
There were many cost overruns and the building
was barely completed by outbreak of the Civil
Lieut. W. W. Marshall
His monument tells us that he was born in East
Tennessee and was 25 years old at the time of
his death. Oddly enough, after having served in
the Mexican War, where there was fierce fighting
and many casualties, he returned to Nashville
where he contracted scarlet fever and died in
May 1848. “Peace to his ashes.”
Robert Armstrong and John Peabody died on
the same day. July 4, 1850. On that very day 17
other people died of the same disease and were
buried in the City Cemetery. In Nashville, a
town of 10,000 people, during the first 4 days
of July, 64 people died of that dread disease
Only the year before James K. Polk, a few months
into his retirement from the presidency, died on
June 15, 1849, in Nashville of cholera. The
remains of the president were placed, with
Masonic honors, in a vault at the City Cemetery.
On May 22, 1850, his remains were re-interred
under a handsome monument, designed by William
Strickland, on the front lawn of his home Polk
Place. Many years later there was another
removal to a final resting place on the State
Robert Armstrong was born in Scotland. In
1850 he lived in a Nashville household with 22
other thrifty Scots. The obelisk placed over his
grave reads “Erected by A Friend.” His monument
says that he was 29 years old.
John Peabody was born in 1792 and died On
July 4th 1850, at age 58, of cholera. The 1850
U.S. Census gives two “John Peabody” of his age:
one lived in Groton, Massachusetts & one in
Erie, Michigan. This handsome monument was not
erected at his burial site until after 1908.
Persons with more information about John
Peabody’s monument, please contact the Nashville
City Cemetery Association.
Francies Maxwell (name as spelled on his
Name was spelled “Frank” in the Interment Book.
He was born in Edinburgh, Scotland. In 1850 he
and his wife Cateren, 19, and child Emma, 1 year
old, lived in Philadelphia. He was 30 years old
when he died in Nashville of consumption on
December 21, 1858.
James A. Laird
Colonel Laird, as he was listed, 34 years old,
in the City Cemetery Interment Book. He died of
consumption, which we now call tuberculosis. In
1860, Laird was listed in a household of ten
people in what is today downtown Nashville. He
left a wife, Martha, aged 23, and a 3 year old
son. Was he a war casualty? The Civil War had
begun six months before his death. He died on
Oct. 31, 1861. There was a James A. Laird listed
in Neely’s 14th Regiment Tennessee Cavalry
(CSA). Persons with more information about James
A. Laird, please contact the Nashville City
Replacement tombstone dedicated by Cumberland
Lodge No. 8 on May 11, 2008, in the presence of
a gathering of Masons, Nashville City Cemetery
Association Board members and his descendant
William R. Cooper.- See bottom images for the Masons.
Nashville Republican Banner June 22, 1871
CUMBERLAND LODGE NO. 8, F. and A.M.--- Called Meeting, this (Thursday) morning, 22nd inst. at 9 o’clock, to attend the funeral of Brother Washington Cooper.
Brother Cooper was one of the oldest Masons in the city, and one of the original members of Cumberland Lodge.
All Masons in good standing are also invited. By order of the W.M.
JOS. S. CARELS, Sec’y.
Prepared by Fletch Coke 5-9-2008
CLICK HERE to see article from Republican Banner, Friday, July 2, 1869 - "Old Memories. Personal Reminiscences of Distinguished Nashville Masons" by Anson Nelson.
1908 Plat Map, Engineer Smith. Section 25 EP Lot 1 Cumberland Lodge No. 8 F.A.M.
7 Tombstones with Names on 1908 Plat Map
Marshall, Liut. W. W.
Little Genie (child of Eugene Windsor/ Interment
Laird, Jas. A.
H.F.P. (H.F. Pierce/ Interment Book)
In addition, 3 tombstones were shown on 1908 Plat
Map but without legible inscriptions.
Note: Little Genie. No tombstone in 2007.
Note: John Peabody. No tombstone in 1908. Tombstone
in 2006 & 2007.
2006 Tombstone Inscription Project (Nashville City
Cemetery Association) Utilizing location maps & ID Numbers (Metro
Section 25.2 Lot 1. Tombstones surveyed 2006
250107 Laird (tombstone broken in 3 pieces 2006)
250111 F. S. (Footstone for #250110)
Tennessee State Library & Archives.
Minutes of Cumberland Lodge No. 8. Free & Accepted
Masons, Nashville, Tennessee. Records, 1817-1963
Accession Number 73-26. On Microfilm.
Minutes reported attendance of Masons at funerals
of their Lodge members. Mention was made of the
payment for services to local undertakers.
Only eight (8) tombstones are located, in 2007, in
the Masonic Lot at the City Cemetery. There were 29
burials on the Masonic Lot between 1846 -1922.
Consideration should be given to the placement of an
historical marker in remembrance of the other Masons
buried on Cumberland Lodge No. 8 Lot in the
Nashville City Cemetery. In the future it is
possible that descendants will want to discuss with
the Metro Historical Commission about replacement