In Utica, Mississippi, we found this monument to Frost J. Kelley, 1870-1909, and besides the beauty of his dress and detail of the likeness, the quote here — and on the monuments of his extended family — extraordinary:
‘He was an honor to the earth on which he lived, and worthy of the heaven to which he has gone.’
The overall base would suggest that plans were for his wife, M.J., to have stood here beside.
‘Oh rain! Fall softly, lightly, above these little heads, oh angels! Spread your sheltering wings above these narrow beds.’
This little lamb for the son of what was probably Frost’s brother, Graves D. Kelley, 1859-1902 (above, ‘His many virtues form the noblest monument to his memory’). Graves Davis Kelley Jr. was born July 5, 1896 and passed away September 4, 1897:
‘Sleep on sweet babe and take thy rest. G-d calls away when he thinks best.’
The tragedies that must’ve befallen this family. Graves’ mother passed away August 1, 1896, less than a month after he was born.
‘It was an angel that visited the green earth and took a flower away. How many hopes lie buried here.’
I tried to find a little bit about the Kelley family, and came across this page of (terribly interesting, sometimes funny) recollections by Richard Powell, who was born in 1919 near Gallatin, Mississippi:
After the boll weevils destroyed the cotton crops, my grandmother sold the Ringgold Plantation to Mrs. Frost Kelley of Utica, Mississippi. Mrs. Frost Kelley’s husband owned a furnishing business in Utica, Mississippi and Mr. D. C. Simmons went to work there as a young boy, as a bookkeeper. When Mr. Frost Kelley, Mr. Simmons took over the business and that is where he made most of his money furnishing the farmers of the area with things that they needed to run their farms. My Grandmother was kin to Mrs. Frost Kelley. When Mr. Frost Kelley died, Mrs. Frost Kelley had a life size marble statue made in Italy of Mr. Frost Kelley and it stands today in the cemetery in Utica, Mississippi.