Archive for December, 2009

Lawtonfest, Part 5, at Bonaventure

December 31, 2009

I might have boogeredup the last two pictures of the last post of Lawtonfest, Part 4.  The next two pictures might be misplaced, and should be switched out with the last two.  Anyway, I confess I’m confused.  There you have it.  I’ll go back someday to Bonaventure and either confirm or deny my picture arrangement.

So.  There are two more grave markers in the central area.  But don’t relax yet- there are lots more throughout the plot.  Here we go.

Elizabeth Shotter Lawton, 1886-1956

Spencer Lawton, 1918-1999

Unless I have my facts confused again, Spencer Lawton has a son, also named Spencer Lawton, who is a Savannah attorney who was in “The Book” (Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil).

A small grave covered in ivy is also in the front right corner of the plot.  The marker is missing.  Not sure what that means.  Broken or stolen?

A child’s grave

In the front left corner is a magnificent memorial to Corinne Elliott Lawton.

Corinne Elliott Lawton. (Do y’all see Sugar in the background??)

There are horizontal grave markers to the rear of this monument, which would place them in the left rear of the plot.  More Lawtons, as luck would have it.

Henry C. Cunningham, April 5th 1842 – May 9th 1917

Who was Henry C. Cunningham?  Funny you should ask.  He married a Lawton.

Nora Lawton, wife of Henry C. Cunningham. March 1st 1855 – April 4th 1943.

And here’s their daughter Sarah.  Once upon a time, many years ago when Sugar was visiting his grandmother Leslie Basinger Lawton in Savannah, Sarah asked if he would call on her.  He did, and she presented him with two candlesticks.  He still has them.  Sarah never married, and so never had children to pass on family items.

Sarah Alexander Cunningham, April 26th 1887 – June 9th 1976

Louisa Frederika Lawton, wife of Leonard Covington Mackall, June 9th 1849 – August 26th 1925

Louisa and Leonard had two sons, Leonard Leopold Mackall who never married, and (Alexander) Lawton Mackall who married Ruth McMillan.  A daughter was also born to them – Corinne Lawton Mackall became Mrs. Gari Melchers, this courtesy of

Lawton Mackall and wife Ruth McMillan

Leonard Leopold Mackall

I don’t know how these Jones folks fit into the mix, but they’re in the Lawton plot, so here they are.

Lee Jones and Robert A. Jones

That’s it for the A. R. Lawton plot at Bonaventure.  However, we stepped over to the river and took a few shots.

Sugar contemplates the river.

I block one of the radio towers in the distance.

A blue heron is in the dead center of the next picture.  Unfortunately, it is too far away to be clear.  I swear it’s a blue heron at the edge of the marsh.

Look! A blue heron!

Let’s pan left to right now.

The embankment has been reinforced.

More panning. More river.

This last panned shot shows the lane that ends at an inlet of the river. We’re on a bit of a promontory.

It was a good day.



Lawtonfest, Part 4, at Bonaventure

December 30, 2009

Your back is to the river & you are viewing the side of this Lawton plot.

There are lots of Lawtons in this plot.  I personally am not related to these folks, so I don’t have all the lineage worked out, but the Lawton followers will know how this plays out.  As for the rest of the non-Lawton world, you can just enjoy the pictures.

This is the front right side of the Lawton plot with the river beyond.

Panning right to left from the river.

The central monument

The threshold of the plot

The left side of the monument. You are facing the river.

A close-up.

The base of the statue.

The right side of the monument. Your back is to the river.

A detail of the front right side of the monument. Notice the reclining sword under the foliage.

Now we stand in front of the monument and look at the grave markers on the ground. 

First we look to the left…

Alexander R. Lawton, etc.

Alexander R. Lawton, 1858-1936

Ella Beckwith Lawton, 1860-1949

John Beckwith Lawton, 1886-1945

In front of the monument, looking at the grave markers from the center to the right. We've already looked at the first stone of Alexander R. Lawton.

Alexander R. Lawton, 1884-1963

Alexander Robert Lawton, 1912-1974

Elizabeth Holdrege Lawton, 1914-1989

Okay, that’s it for today.  There’s more for Lawtonfest, Part 5, at Bonaventure.  Tomorrow…

Lawtonfest, Part 3, at Bonaventure

December 29, 2009

Bonaventure Cemetery entrance

The office to the right of the gate

Sugar’s mother’s mother was a Basinger.  The Basinger family plot is in Bonaventure. 

The entrance stone for the plot

Each plot is outlined by some sort of framework.  It might be granite or marble or decorative fencing. 

The plot

The picture above is the marker for William Starr Basinger (BASS-sin-juhr) and his wife Margaret Roane Garnett Basinger.  They are yet another set of Sugar’s great-grandparents.  The man has more great-grandparents than most people.  I swear.  Some people get all the luck. 

Another Confederate States of America marker, this one for William Starr Basinger, who also wrote a book of reminiscences.

William and Margaret had a nice sized family.  Some of their offspring are buried here.

Here's James Garnett Basinger, husband of Nannie Screven Basinger.

Here's William Starr Basinger.

Here's Leslie Basinger Lawton, Sugar's mother's mother

Leslie Basinger Lawton lived into her nineties in her home on Taylor Street in Savannah.  Her husband was Edward Lawton who ran sugar plantations in Puerto Rico. 

Here's Thomas Garnett Basinger.

There were a couple more siblings that are not buried in Savannah.

Margaret Lawton Garrard, Sugar's mother's sister

A Christmas poinsettia for a mother. This is Genevieve Lawton Bateson, Sugar's mother.

Here’s a sad one.  The next picture is Sugar’s twin brother, Richard or Richie, who was killed in a childhood accident.

Richard Humphreys Bateson, Sugar's twin and older brother

That’s about it for tonight.  There’s a set of Lawtons in this cemetery closer to the river.  That will have to be Lawtonfest, Part 4.

Until then, here’s a teaser shot of the river…

Time flows on like the river.

I made over 100 photos.  What was I thinking?

Lawtonfest, Part 2

December 28, 2009
Danger Will Robinson!  Your computer might explode from photo-goodness!
Here’s more detail of the Lawton-Jones mausoleum.  Skip over this part if you don’t want to see close-ups of brick and marble.

From the side rear

From the other rear corner

Roof detail

Corner foundation and support

Hey! A corner!

Crape myrtles choking with spanish moss

We look back as we leave, panning from left to right.

Panning left to right, 2 of 3 photos

Panning left to right, 3 of 3 photos

Now on to the Confederate Memorial, here in the same cemetery, Laurel Grove. 

The main statuary

"To the Confederate Dead" on the base of the statue


"Tread lightly for each man bequeathed, 'Ere placed beneath the sod, His ashes to his native land, His gallant soul to God."

On the rear of the base

"On Fame's eternal camping ground, Their silent tents are spread, And Glory guards with silent round, The Bivouac of the Dead."

And now the men…

Panning left to right

Panning left to right, 2 of 3 photos

3 of 3. You can see the statuary in the distance.

A memorial flagpole

The flag atop the pole hung slack.  Then a breeze magically came along and the flag unfurled.

The flag at rest

The sky was an amazing blue. Red, white, and blue. Hear the flag pop in the wind?

And now on to Bonaventure…

A Post-Christmas Lawtonfest Post

December 27, 2009
Warning:  This post is photo-heavy…
Sugar wanted to take poinsettias to his mother’s and his cousin’s graves in Savannah, GA.  We planned to go on Christmas day, but rain came on and off all day.  Today was picture-perfect for touring graveyards.

First we went to see his Cousin Margaret at Laurel Grove.  Margaret’s mother and Sugar’s mother were Lawton sisters.

Laurel Grove Cemetery

The office to the right of the gate

Gate Detail

Gate post detail

I cannot take my RV to this cemetery

Entry Lane

Cousin Margaret claimed the last spot in a mausoleum.  When she passed away, Sugar assisted with the arrangements.  A key had to be made for the marble door – you’ll see pictures of that soon, but don’t get creeped out – it’s not possible to go inside.  Sugar’s great-grandfather, William Seabrook Lawton has a memorial in front of the mausoleum – you’ll see pictures soon, too.  First the shot of the mausoleum.  It’s rather grand. 

The approach

The facade. "Jones 1859" and under that "Lawton".

Facade detail

Poinsettia by Sugar

William Seabrook Lawton & wife Elizabeth Jones Lawton. "THEIR CHILDREN SHALL ARISE UP AND CALL THEM BLESSED."

Detail of memorial

A "Confederate States of America" grave marker to the right of the door

The marble door

The keyhole

The mausoleum is full, but there are burial spaces left around the building inside the fencing.  The last time we were here, the gate was almost nonfunctional from time and rust.  Today we find that it has been removed.

The pegs remain if you'd like to hang another gate.

Emily Augusta Lawton

Inside the fence

A Lawton descendant

Another Lawton descendant

The wife of a Lawton descendant

There was a caterpillar on the gate post standing guard.

Shouldn't Mr. Caterpillar be in a cocoon?

Just chillin'

We haven’t even finished with this cemetery.  There’s an interesting Civil War memorial, and then we’ll go on to Bonaventure, the site of the Book, “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil”, where Sugar’s mother is buried.  I’ll make separate posts for all that.  Lots of photos to follow, and I don’t want your computer to explode with all the cemetery excitement.

Drug House Gone

December 26, 2009

Tuesday evening, 12/22/09

I returned home Tuesday evening after ranting the day before about the property across the street.  The drug house was almost completely destroyed!  One corner stood.

What the heck?

While I was standing there with my mouth dropped open gazing across the street, a man drove up in a white pickup.  He got out and started taking pictures with his cell phone of the razed lot and the heavy equipment.  I recognized the look.  I did the same thing when my septic tank and well were being installed. 

I called out, nonchalantly, “Hey.  What’s going on over there?”  He said, “I’m building a house.”  I said, “Great!”  He didn’t offer any more information to the crazy white woman hiding her camera behind her back.

Mr. Kobelco rests between rounds

So.  There you have it.  Someone is building across the street.  They removed every stinkin’ tree except one.

Positive Heartworm Test

December 26, 2009

A simple test for heartworm in dogs is a Heska test strip.  A sample of blood is taken from the dog, and three drops of the blood are placed in the well on the test strip.  In about five minutes, the blue control line will show.  If blue is the only color showing, this is negative and this is always good.  If a red line shows in addition to the blue, the dog is heartworm positive.  A strong red line means a strong positive. 

Marsha the mom is positive

You might remember Marsha, the mother of the 10 puppies that Richard rescued.  Stray dogs of at least 1 year will generally be heartworm positive. 


Last month Sugar and I went to Richard’s to give his dogs their monthly meds for flea control and heartworm prevention.  He had scooped up a couple of older stray pups, and there were eight dogs milling around.  We put a combination flea & heartworm topical on everyone.  Four days later, Richard reported that Marsha was lethargic and coughing.  Then I realized what we had done.

I’ll repeat that I am not a vet.  If a dog tests positive for heartworm, the vet generally recommends a procedure, costing hundreds of dollars, that involves several shots of immiticide spaced out over several months to kill the worms.  The procedure can also kill the dog.  Most people don’t have several hundred dollars to spend on the dog, and might choose to do nothing.  There’s another procedure that you probably can’t get a vet to recommend, because it’s a cheaper fix.  There’s a monthly regimen of heartworm prevention, either a liquid, a chew, or a tablet, and it must be done regularly every month.  It kills the young worms.  The older worms residing in the heart die of old age.  It could take two years or more to achieve a heartworm-free dog.  We successfully treated Richard’s dogs, who were heartworm positive in 2006, and now they are not. 

We realized that Marsha had never seen a vet, and she was most likely heartworm positive, and that she was having a reaction to the heartworms dying from the medication that we gave her.  The soft cough was a symptom of the  heartworms passing from the heart into the lungs, which of course created the lethargy.  The week following the first heartworm prevention application found her back to normal. 

I am not a vet.

Goodbye to the Beetle Bug

December 25, 2009

Beetle Bug

This is the Beetle Bug.  She wandered up to the vet’s office about a year and a half ago.  She had a numerical tattoo inside both ears which is a system used by breeders and hunt clubs to identify their dogs.  No one claimed her.  The shelter had no reports of a missing dog that matched her description.

Beetle in the car

At the time she was found, Sugar’s daughter was working at the vet’s office.  She would take the Beetle Bug to and from the vet’s office to Sugar’s house for the day, pleading with him to keep the Beetle.  He didn’t want another dog, and certainly not a hound dog.  Hounds are incessantly hungry, they howl, and they have frenetic energy.  The Beetle was slightly different in that she wasn’t very energetic.  She turned out to have a thyroid condition, and would need medication for the rest of her life.  Sugar finally agreed to take her because no one wanted her, and if she went to the pound, she would most likely be put to sleep.  Who would want an old, lethargic, hungry, loud hound dog that won’t hunt and needs medication for the rest of her life?  Her fate would be certain.  So she went to live at the Little Big House near the Swamped! Plantation.  She fit in well enough and was no trouble.

Leaner, slimmer days

She started out about 60 pounds.  Because of her thyroid condition, she began putting on weight.  Even with medication, she weighed over 100 pounds.  She had developed a hard lump on her neck, another on her stomach, and a soft lump on her left foreleg.  The vet decided upon examination to remove the hard lumps.  An appointment for surgery was set for the following week.

At the gate

On the day of surgery, the vet drew blood for the preanesthetic bloodwork.  He did not perform an in-house test, but sent the blood out that afternoon to an outside lab.  The results would be back the following morning. 

The results for the PREANESTHETIC bloodwork would be back the following day.  After surgery.

The surgery was performed, and after surgery the Beetle rested on the floor of the treatment area while the anesthesia wore off.  A young Great Dane puppy had been neutered, and he attached himself to the Beetle for comfort.

BeetleBug and No Name

Beetle didn’t come out from anesthesia well.  The vet came back from lunch and announced that he was worried about her heart.  She remained lethargic, and wouldn’t eat or drink.  Sugar came by at the end of the day to pick her up, and the vet convinced him to let the dog remain overnight.

The next morning she was still lethargic, not eating, not drinking.  Sugar came by after work to pick her up.  The results of the bloodwork should have been in by the open of business that day, but there was a problem at the lab, and the vet had to call for the test results.  He reported that she was in stage two of renal failure.  That was something I had not expected to hear. 

That night Sugar reported that BeetleBug was vomiting, and he thought that she was dying.  I offered to meet him at the vet’s office the next morning early so he could drop her off on the way to work, and I’d do an in-house blood test.

The next morning she was no better, and we met at the office.  He went to work, and I performed a general health profile that showed her kidney, liver, and glucose levels were very high.  The vet said that she was in advanced renal failure and would need to be euthanized.  Sugar came to the office after work, and the procedure was done.  The poor Beetle was no more. 

The vet has been very distracted over the last few months with the sale of the practice, the demands of a wife and family having moved 3 hours away to a new school district, and money woes.  He rushed the procedure before the results were in, and the results would have shown that the Beetle would be at risk for going under anesthesia. 

Sugar just wanted to do something nice for the Beetle by having the lumps removed.  Nobody had wanted her until she went to live with him.  And if she couldn’t have the surgery, she would have lived out her life peacefully lying under the pear tree by the porch.

Cute Cat Pics

December 24, 2009

Esquire & Bob-ra practice for the Catnapping Olympics

We are professionals. Do not try this at home.

Esquire & Bob-ra will be going to their new home next week – together!  Bob-ra was mad when I brought Esquire home for her to meet.  She was hissy and afraid and growly for 4 days.  After 2 days, I started using a product called Feli-way which is a plug-in type device like a room deodorizer plug-in.  The cartridge holds a solution that mimics a mother cat’s pheromones that are released for her kittens to help calm them down and give them the warm fuzzies.  This stuff really works for cats in a stressful situation.  I was stressed about all the cat unhappiness because Bob-ra pooped on my bed to show me how she really felt about the situation.  Anyway, it didn’t work as fast as I wanted it to – like instantly- but now they get along famously and make a really cute pair.

Something’s Happening in the Hood

December 21, 2009

Trees Begone!

I came home from work this evening to find that the land across the road from me is being cleared.  I can’t imagine why.  It’s the crappiest little piece of land.  It’s low, it floods, and there’s only a few hundred feet of depth from the road frontage to a drainage canal.  For whatever reason, the trees are being removed. 

Georgia contemplates the destruction

As you turn left onto Resurrection Road, my lot is on the right.  There’s an old fallen-in concrete block house on the left.  I call it the drug-drop house.  Last February, one balmy evening after work I was sitting in the yard under the trees.  The sun was going down and it was peaceful in the hood.  A truck stopped in front of the drug-drop house, a man got out of the passenger side and went to the drug-drop house, then returned to the passenger side of the truck, and the truck drove off.

There had been a shooting in my driveway last August, drug related of course, and I’m pretty cautious about my little hood.  I decided it was time to act.

Yes, I did.  I went to the drug-drop house, and I looked in through what used to be a door.

I looked in through this back door

This was somebody's home once

This is the window

Right under this window, there was a gym bag. 

Yes, I did.  I walked over to the gym bag, and I LOOKED INSIDE.  I saw a pair of shoes on top, and odd assorted tools under the shoes.  I went home.  And I thought about what to do about this. 

I changed clothes.  Black pants, turtleneck, and sweater.  I looked like frumpy spy granny.  By now, it was dark outside.  I got my trusty cellphone and my little flashlight in case I needed them, and I went back across the road.  To the drug-drop house. 

I knew that if I just reached in the window, the bag was directly under the opening, and I could just pick it up, put it in the trunk of my car, and drive to the sheriff’s department.  It was a plan.

I crept through the underbrush to the window, and reached in and down and closed my hand on… nothing.  I leaned in through the window and looked down.  Nothing was there.  In the time it had taken me to change my clothes, someone had come along and retrieved the bag.  I had never heard a vehicle, nor seen headlights, and the dogs hadn’t barked.

What kind of tough gang uses pink spray paint?

I’ve considered purchasing the property so that I could have the house demolished.  Lack of money prevents me from doing that. 

So here’s another odd piece of the puzzle.  The woods around the drug houses are not being cleared, but the woods in what I’m guessing would be the next lot are being removed.

Georgia and Sylvia are on the case.  Tune in next week for more happenins in the hood.