Smith Cemetery4400 Boyd Rd
Plain City, Ohio 43064
614-265-6565 | http://naturepreserves.ohiodnr.gov/smithcemetery
Resting amid acres of farmland, Smith Cemetery State Nature Preserve is one of the finest intact remnants of the once vast Darby Plains tallgrass prairie.
Resting amid acres of unbroken farmland, Smith Cemetery State Nature Preserve is one of the finest intact remnants of the once vast Darby Plains tallgrass prairie. Over twenty-three difference species of prairie plants are found at Smith Cemetery, many of which accent the greens of the tall grasses with pops of red, yellow, and blue in the summer.
The cemetery was originally part of the Virginia Military Lands of Ohio. These lands were set aside to be settled by Virginia's veterans of the Revolutionary War as compensation for their contributions to the war effort. Walter Dun, a government surveyor, acquired the land upon which Smith Cemetery rests on November 20th of 1816 as payment for his services. President James Monroe even signed the transfer of the land, but it doesn't appear that Dun ever called the plains home.
The cemetery gained its name from the Smith family who arrived in Ohio from Vermont in 1818. The Andrews family were the first settlers to call the land home, but when malaria swept through the area between 1819 and 1823, only the children survived. The oldest daughter, Lucindia, married Samuel Smith Jr. Following Lucindia’s death, Samuel eventually purchased the land from Walter Dun. Amid the 105 acres he acquired was Smith Cemetery.
In 1982, the Smith family transferred ownership of the cemetery to the Darby Township Trustees to be administered by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Division of Natural Areas and Preserves. Scattered throughout the grasses and prairie flowers are the grave markers of the Andrews and Smith families, unbroken ties to Ohio’s ecological past and the American Revolution.
Notes for Travelers
There is no designated paved parking for this site. There is space for visitors to pull off the road directly in front of the cemetery. Space is limited, so busses and large vans may need to find alternative parking arrangements.