Genealogical gems…we all know them when we find them and proudly display them in our family tree! For years I have been researching our family. I know the ancestors and descendants…that is the easy part, but what I cherish are the finds that actually tell you about the person. Obituaries can be hit or miss, but boy did we hit the jackpot on this one!
From the New Market Journal – January 12, 1863
(Typed as it appeared) Obituary of Francis Simpson
Departed this life on December 25, 1862, in New London, Frederick County, Md., after a lingering illness FRANCIS SIMPSON, age seventy-one, nine months and eighteen days.
Brother Simpson, the son of Basil and Sarah Worthington Simpson, was born in Johnsville, Frederick County, MD. He had the misfortune at an early age of seventeen years to lose his eye-sight. His eyes naturally weak from childhood, were greatly injured as was supposed by efforts made when a school boy was made to gaze long at the sun, and though surgical relief was sought, ultimate total blindness was the result. His father, removing to Elkridge in the vicinity of Savage Factory, soon there after died, the subject of this brief memoir the possessor of a handsome patrimony. But alas! with him the loss of sight was the precursor of the loss of worldly wealth, which was to him the greater misfortune, as a young and comparatively helpless family was thus left wholly to his own necessarily inefficient exertions, for support.
Thus the dishonesty of false friends and a severe attack of illness had the effect for several years to impair his mind. He joined the Methodist Episcopal Church about the 30th year of his age. His religious life was also, at times, chequered by occasional periods of coldness, despondency and gloom. It is probable when wholly himself, he never entirely lost his confidence in the personally availing efficacy of the Redeemer’s blood. Though often from blindness and other reasons, deprived of the privilege of going to the house of God, yet is is doubtless his desire to be a child of God. He ever delighted in family worship, and signing the praises of God aloud was especially the solace and comfort of the last twelve months of his life. His last words were, “my trust is in Jesus.”
His funeral was largely attended at Central Chapel, when a discourse was preached by the writer from the words:
“And I will bring the blind by the way that they knew not; I will lead them in paths that they have not know; I will make the darkness light before them, and crokoed things straight. These things will I do unto them and not forsake them.” (Isaiah, 42d chapter, 16th verse)
May all of his friends and family meet him in heaven.
How is that for an obit!! Rest in Peace Francis Simpson.