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From: "Marsha Sears" <>
Subject: Liberty Union Church and the Deeds Cemetery
Date: Sun, 12 Mar 2006 06:47:59 -0600


Hi all,

I am hoping someone on the list can help with a little history lesson and also provide some needed information.

I am interested in the history of the Liberty Union Church. I believe the church was built on land that used to be owned by the Turners, but I could be wrong. I know the Turners donated land for a school (the Turner Schoolhouse) and that Mrs. Turner was originally a Deeds. The Deeds Cemetery is located on the hill behind the Liberty Union Church.

The Deeds Cemetery was formed on land that originally belonged to John George Deeds and his son, Lewis Napolean Bonaparte Deeds. When "Bony" died during the early part of the Civil War, his wife Sarah moved back to Illinois and then eventually returned to what was known as the "Deeds Settlement." John George Deeds was born Johann Jorg Dietz in Pennsylvania. His parents migrated to the U.S. as Palastine Germans in the 1700s. They were Bavarian Germans, very close knit and strong in their faith and beliefs! You could almost say the "Deeds Settlement" would have been very similar to the Mennonites and Amish of today.

Almost all of the land surrounding the cemetery and church were, at one time, owned by someone within the Deeds family, whether it was Turners, Hines, McDonalds/McDannalds or Deeds. There were also neighbors and friends that lived nearby including the Hostetters, Porters, Van De Venters, Altisers, Reeves, Tuckers, Baldridges and others. These families can also be found near the Deeds in Illinois where they migrated from.

I am really curious as to when the church became the Liberty Union. If the church was built prior to the Civil War, was it renamed this when the war was over? Or was it built shortly after and named to honor the end of the war? My great-great grandmother, Martha Jane Deeds Rodgers was a member of the church, but was also a 7th Day Adventist. I am not sure how that came about or whether the church, at one time, was a 7th Day Adventist or if it has always been Baptist? The Deeds, I believe, were Lutheran originally.

There are many Civil War soldiers buried in the cemetery as well as their families and I would love to see both the church and the cemetery placed on the National Registry of Historic Places...I just do not know where to begin!!!

I know the church is still in use and would also like to contact them to assist in obtaining a place on the Registry. If you know of any members, I would also greatly appreciate that information!

Any help would be appreciated! THANK YOU!!

Marsha


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