Bad year for the Thorps

Most headstone inscriptions don’t go beyond the biographical info, DOB, date of death, perhaps they were a beloved mother or father. Sometimes you see headstones that tell a tale, a lengthy prose that describes their life, how they lived, or perhaps even how they died. But every once in a while you find that the biographical info itself tells a tale. The Thorp family lived in what is now Morris County in the early 1800’s. They lost 2 children within two weeks in 1825, and lost 3 more children within 8 weeks in 1832, with a 6th child lost somewhere in between. After losing 3 children so quickly, both parents died themselves with 5 months.

Considering this was the early 1800’s the possibility of disease of illness coming in and decimating this family is quite possible. What strikes me is that this didn’t happen all at once. Two children in two weeks, and 3 children in 8 weeks. I can’t imagine how horrible it must have been to lose children in such a fashion. It also makes me wonder if the mother and father died from the same illness, or if from a broken heart instead.



David (age 5) dies on February 22, 1825 the twin headstone reveals that Nancy (age 6) dies 16 days later on March 10, 1825


At some point between 1825 and 1832, another child dies but the name and date are unknown due to damage to the stone itself


Seven years after losing 2 children in two weeks, the cycle begins again as Robert (age 15) dies on March 5, 1832


Joseph (age 24) dies 6 weeks later on April 21, 1825. Silas (age 8) becomes the 3rd child to die in 3 months, as he dies 3 weeks after his older brother on May 10, 1825


What killed these children is unknown but illness or disease is most likely. Whether from the same disease or from grief we can’t know, but the mother Mary dies August 23, 1832 only 3 months after losing her 6th child.


The father David passes on October 31, 1832


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