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January 4, 2014

Tracking Matthew Patton

Descendants of Clinton County's oldest man find 19th century ancestor's grave

(Continued)

MOOERS —

“His wife that is related to me was the last wife who was the same age as one of his daughters. Her name is Eliza Elizabeth Lacey. She was born in Mooers also.”

Gariepy is now addicted to tracking her ancestors. She mentioned to her mother that Patton was buried in Mooers Forks.

“She said, ‘It’s not far. We can go look,’” Gariepy said. “I said OK that would be really neat. We went to the cemetery a month or so ago. We went with my father, John Auza. We went and were looking everywhere. There are a lot of tombstones.”

In the cemetery, White spied a stranger, Clyde Rabideau Sr., a Plattsburgh resident and author of three volumes of Clinton County cemetery records and seven Robidoux volumes.

“My mother ended up speaking to him,” Gariepy said. “He didn’t believe how old he (Patton) was until he saw his paperwork. He helped look. We didn’t find it. My mother gave him her phone number just in case he found some info out.”

Rabideau contacted White and informed her he put up two flags between where Patton was buried and the tombstones on either side of his.

“(Rabideau) told us to come with a little pick because the tombstone may have fallen over and been buried,” Gariepy said. “We went with little picks feeling the ground. We brought a little garden shovel. My mother started on one end, and I started at another poking the ground.”

Auza returned with them and joked he had a feeling Patton was buried around a certain spot he was looking at.

“(My father) was kidding,” Gariepy said.

“He was kicking the ground. He said, ‘Oh there’s something there.’ I cleaned away the dirt, and it said M. Patton. That is kind of weird. Because he was joking. We’re not into that kind of stuff. It was really funny.”

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