A mystery has been solved, at least in part.
A story in Monday’s News Tribune (“Searching for a piece of family history”) told about Chuck Choate of Fargo, N.D., and his search for a gravestone at Oneota Cemetery in West Duluth. He knew that his uncle, Charles Stanley Choate, was buried there after he died in a swimming accident in the St. Louis Bay on July 31, 1916. He was only 7 or 9 — accounts from the time give both ages — when he died.
Chuck Choate knew the approximate location of his uncle’s burial, but was unable to find a gravestone Saturday.
Glenn Modean, cemetery superintendent, explained in an e-mail that a fire in 1918 might have destroyed a wooden marker, if there was one. At the time many families didn’t have the money to buy a memorial, so no permanent marker ever was placed, he added.
Modean told Choate, in an e-mail, that he was in the right place, and that it’s still possible to place a granite marker there. Choate told us he’s interested.