Mystery: Where do these grave markers dating back to 1930s belong?


YORK COUNTY, SC (FOX 46) — This slideshow requires JavaScript.

A pair of mystery tombstones sitting in an evidence locker in South Carolina for more than a decade have been brought into the light in hopes of being returned to their proper resting place. 

In 2004 a citizen in Clover, SC found two tombstones on the side of the road off the 200 block of Jackson Lake Lane, according to the York County Sheriff’s Office. 

“Nearby churches were called, no other church or cemetery reported a broken or damaged headstone,” said Det. Walter Beck with the York County Sheriff’s Office.

Fast forward to 2017 and the sheriff’s office rediscovered the grave markers following up on another case.

“So since 2004 the stones have been sitting in evidence, not marking graves.”

One of the grave markers is fully intact, while the other is the top half of a broken head stone. Other than that, not much is known about the stones.

The sheriff’s office says they don’t know if the grave markers were stolen, stolen in a prank, or damaged and then dumped after they were replaced. Detectives just know the markers shouldn’t be in the YCSO evidence lot. 

“The fully intact stone reads – Luther Parrott Dec. 18, 1894 – Jan. 18, 1936 ‘Gone but not forgotten.’ The broken half stone James R. Smith and what we can read it’s March 2, Possibly 187-? or 19 something. It’s broken right on the year.”

Detectives cleaned the stones and are working to figure out where they belong. 

“Technology has come a long way. Maybe there’s some better record on the internet, hopefully something we can find.”

Det. Beck says they have exhausted all of their leads. They hope that the public can help solve the mystery of just where these headstones belong so they can return them to their rightful place.

One of the grave stones could be linked to a cemetery in Belmont, NC. A Luther Parrott with roughly the same birth and death dates is listed in the Goshen Cemetery, according to The website database says Parrott was born in Tennessee and died in Gaston County, NC. 

Anyone with information is asked to contact the York County Sheriff’s Office in South Carolina.

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