1991 Daniel Burial Ground Hike

Published in JFA newsletter no. 5, Winter 1991

Daniel Junkins Burial Ground

On Saturday afternoon, August 17, several members of the Junkins Family Association met with Roland Junkins to hike to the Daniel Junkins burial ground. This can be found as #30 on the map of Junkins Burial Grounds in York, Maine, pp. 16-17 of JFA newsletter no. 4, Summer 1991.

At about 1:30 p.m., this small group consisting of Russell and Anna Blease, Alan and Betty Junkins, Ken Junkins, Clifford Junkins and Roland Junkins assembled on Kingsbury Lane at a point opposite the Samuel Burial Ground and where the trail conditions became impassible to ordinary automobiles. Armed with our cameras, video cameras, and sun hats, we started up the trail, which at one time was the wagon road up the mountain to the Daniel Junkins Farm.

There is no doubt about missing the way as the trail winds up and down the hills and through the deep woods. It is only about a mile and three quarters to the Daniel farm house, but keeping an eye on where you are stepping, stopping for several points of interest, and the major portion being up hill, it took well over forty-five minutes to reach the top. The trail is used by hunters and dirt bikers and is, therefore, not overgrown with brush or weeds.

One of the first points of interest was a granite bridge consisting of two great granite slabs placed over the small brook that feeds Boulter Pond. At this point, looking to the southeast, you can see the head end of Boulter Pond, a lake about two miles long, completely covered by deep woods. It is quiet, no houses, no boats, no civilization, just the deer and other wildlife that come down to the water to drink.

The trail winds through deep woods and on either side there are sometimes large outcroppings of rock and still the evidence of a time long ago when Daniel and his family worked the land as a farm. There are remains of stone walls that separated the different fields, which are now grown up solid with great trees.

About a quarter mmile up on the trail, we came to the remains of the Sylvester Junkins house. Deep into the back of the foundation, we could see the root cellar where the family stored their root crops or other vegetables. We took a few moments to explore around the foundation of the house and take pictures. Roland explained that Sylvester's grave was a single marker about ten minutes deeper in the woods at a high point where three sides were bordered by water, part of the Kingsbury Marsh. We did not go to that burial ground.

On up the trail, we passed the point where the entrance of the Daniel Junkins Farm once stood. On the right side of the trail was the large monolith stone, lying on its side, which once stood as an entrance to the farm. The companion stone from the other side of the gate was long ago carried off by someone. They had to put a great deal of effort into that task for the stones must weigh at least five or six hundred pounds each. They must have tried to move the one on the right side of the trail for it could not have fallen over by itself.

Another few hundred yards up the trail we found the foundation of the Daniel Junkins homestead. Three generations of Daniels lived there. The large granite slabs over the root cellar were still in the position as Roland had described in past newsletters. Roland and his nephew had attempted to move the one back into the proper position this past year but were unsuccessful. At one time, the house stood high on the mount with sloping fields off to the south to provide a picturesque view of the surrounding countryside. Two or three huge maple trees, obviously several hundred years old, at one time gave shade to the southern side of the farm house.

We stopped there for a few minutes again while we caught our breath, wondered at the magnificent setting there must have been in the 1700s. The great house overlooked the forests below, and we thought of our ancestors walking up the trail on their way home from working in the fields or maybe out hunting for meat for the table, keeping a sharp eye and ear tuned for the crack of a twig in the woods, for it might be a deer or, on the other hand, it could well have been a stalking Indian.

After a few minutes of resting, picture taking and measuring the house foundation, Roland lead us out a short trail to the northwest where, in a small clearing with the sun shining brightly through the trees, we came upon the Daniel Junkins burial ground. We found the restored and repaired headstones of Daniel Junkins and his wife, Hannah (Shaw) Junkins, David Junkins and his wife Abigail (Junkins) Junkins, and several other graves marked with field stones. Roland told us of how he stumbled upon Daniel's headstone half buried and broken in the little used trail. Roland and his nephew spent many hours hiking up and down the trail this past year, carrying tools, patching materials and cement to the site to restore the burial ground. It is a beautiful serene spot high on the mount in a little clearing where the sun comes through and warms the heart.

Not many of us Junkins will have the good fortune to be able to climb to this spot, but if we are lucky, Roland will once again guide those who are hardy and game, to the top of the mount where we will have the chance to experience this sight. Next year, during the Junkins Family Association reunion, there will be several opportunities to have guided tours of the seven Junkins burial grounds in the York area.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License