Portland Lone Fir Cemetery 2016 — photo 3 of 13:
The setting sun illuminates the west side of a tombstone in the historic (established in 1855) Lone Fir Cemetery
in Southeast Portland,
Oregon, September 2016. It reads:
Born May 12, 1881
Died Aug 16, 1899
Edward Stone Josephi
Born Feb 8, 1874
Died Aug 6, 1874
(faint illegible writing)
S.E. & H.M. Josephi
I’ve done some research to help make sense of this inscription. Let’s take it point by point:
Camera used: Olympus OM-D E-M5 with Panasonic Lumix 12-35mm f/2.8 zoom lens.
- Simeon Edward Josephi, born in New York City in 1849, arrived in Portland in 1867, at age 17. He worked as a bookkeeper and clerk at the Oregon Hospital for the Insane, co-founded by Dr. James C. Hawthorne in East Portland. Dr. Hawthorne started training Simeon as a doctor while he was still working as a bookkeeper, after persuading him to enter that profession. After some ups and downs and a lot of hard work, he graduated from medical school ten years later in 1877. He was hired by Dr. Hawthorne as an assistant physician at the Hospital for the Insane. When Dr. Hawthorne died four years later, Josephi took charge of the hospital until the Oregon State Hospital opened in Salem two years later, and Portland’s Hospital for the Insane was closed. He died in 1935 at age 85.
- Hannah Marcia Stone was born Wisconsin in 1853, and came to Oregon with her family when she was 13. In 1871, at age 17, she married Simeon Josephi. She died in 1932 at age 78.
- In light of the intimate connection between Simeon Josephi and James Hawthorne, it is not surprising that Simeon and Hannah honored that relationship by naming one of their sons Hawthorne. Hawthorne Murray Josephi was born in 1881, the youngest of five children. In an interview in 1926, conducted at age 76, Simeon recounted: “Our son, Hawthorne M. Josephi, while a student at Stanford, was working during his vacation for the Portland Electric Company. He was 18 years old. On August 16, 1899, he rode his bicycle home and was caught in a hard rain. He went to the bathroom to take a bath and found the electric light was not working properly. Standing on an iron register in his wet clothes, he attempted to fix the light and was instantly killed. My wife and I have never recovered from the grief at his death [27 years later].”
- Edward Stone Josephi had his father’s middle name as his first name, and his mother’s maiden name as his middle name. The second of five children, he died two days before turning six months old.