To the Memory of
MARY JAMES FOWLER
Who departed this life
On the Twenty Second day of July
Eighteen Hundred and Fifty Three
In the Nineteenth Year of Her Age.
I mourn Thee, my sainted Wife,
But not without hope, for thy fond
Memory as a ministering Angel
Will often point to that home of
The blest, whither thou art gone
And tell me to follow thee
Who by faith and patience hath
Inherited the promises
Blessed are the pure in heart
For they shall see God
The last two lines of the epitaph is from Matthew 5:8. What precedes is the heartfelt outpouring of a young, grieving husband, who lost his beloved shortly after they were wed.
Mary James Fowler Pressley carried the full name of her father, who had died shortly before she was born. She was destined to die at the same young age of nineteen, leaving behind another grieving spouse.
John Gotea Pressley, her cousin, said of Mary:
Mary James Fowler Pressley...was a young woman lovely in person and character. She was about two years my junior and was a schoolmate of mine when at the schools taught by Stone and Laferty. I saw a great deal of her, both in her Grandfather Dicks house, and at my own fathers and Grandma Pressleys. I had the love of a brother for her.
She went by the name of Fowler. Cousin Fowler was sincerely loved by all of her relatives. She married James McCutchen, as I have mentioned, and lived but a short time afterwards, leaving no children
At the time of my visit in 2003, the grave stone had slid down into the ground, obscuring all but the first three lines of the epitaph. I was able to pull back enough soil with my hands to read the balance, afterwhich I spoke with the groundskeeper, who promised to lift the stone to it original position.