The Mysterious Mudd Grave of Monterey

 

Ida & George Mudd as played by Dr. Op Walker and Kay Walker

Ida & George Mudd as played by Dr. Op Walker and Kay Walker

A few years ago I chanced upon the gravestone in Whitaker Cemetery in Monterey, Tennessee of a ‘George Winfield Mudd.’ Can you guess who came to my mind? Hmm… Monterey, by the way, is the hometown of many of my Nash kin. I lived there for a time also. I was in the cemetery visiting some Nash graves and just started walking around looking at the names and dates on the markers and stones. Anyone who has spent anytime at all doing genealogy can relate to that behavior. So there I found myself staring down at this ‘Mr. Mudd.’ I asked a cousin about the grave. She thought that he was indeed a kin to Dr. Samuel Mudd (the physician who treated the wounded John Wilkes Booth). She also said something about someone else being buried underneath the body of Mudd!

 

When I returned home I posted an inquiry at the Mudd Genealogy Forum on Genealogy.com. Did anyone know about the Mudd grave in Whitaker Cemetery?

Alas, almost nine years later a reply was posted! Dr. Op Walker, who as it turned out, is related to me, had the answer! He said that he had actually corresponded with Dr. Richard Mudd, the grandson of Dr. Samuel Mudd. Dr. Richard Mudd had spent a good part of his life trying to clear his grandfather’s name concerning his involvement with John Wilkes Booth. Mr. George Mudd, as it turned out, was a cousin to Dr. Samuel Mudd. The Mudd family thanked Op Walker for finding their long lost relative’s grave. Some of the Mudds even ventured to Monterey to see the gravesite in the 1980’s.

 

Mr. George Mudd was a Master Mechanic for the railroad and lived in Monterey, since Monterey was a repair station for trains belonging to the Tennessee Central. He moved to Monterey in 1922. I would have thought that George Mudd got as far away from Maryland as he could because of the Mudd name. He had been born in Charles County, Maryland. George was sixteen years old when President Lincoln was assassinated on Easter weekend, April 1865. One can only imagine the stigma attached to the Mudd family name after Dr. Samuel Mudd was convicted in the Lincoln case. Even so, Dr. Richard Mudd told U.S.A. Today, “I am proud to have the name Mudd!”  Despite the “problems” associated with the Mudd name, Ida Zoe Walters married George Mudd. They raised three sons. George made a living in the railroad profession.

 

George Mudd lived the last six years of his life in Monterey, where he died in 1928. He had wanted his burial to occur in his home State of Maryland but his sons gave their permission for the resting place in Whitaker Cemetery. Dr. Op Walker’s father and uncle dug the grave. They reported that there was a body already buried in the gravesite (unmarked). George Mudd was buried there anyway. No one knows who the identity of the other body.

In recognition of Monterey’s place in the life of George Winfield Mudd and his wife Ida Zoe Mudd- and of the Mudds themselves, a theatre production was performed in the 2009 Monterey Dinner Theatre. Dr.Op Walker played the role of George Mudd and his wife Kay played the part of Ida Zoe Mudd. I’m told it was a great success. May George Winfield Mudd rest in peace. He has distinction of having his name remembered long after his death. No, he had nothing to do with the conspiracy to kill Abraham Lincoln. Now if someone could just find out whom in the world he is eternally laying on top of!

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One Response to “The Mysterious Mudd Grave of Monterey”

  1. Op Walker says:

    This is a history that was hidden for many decades Thanks to the efforts of Bill Nash, little known facts concerning relationships of those involved in the Lincoln Assassination’s aftermath are gradually coming to light. Bill Nash’s Blog is the best I have seen. True meaning with an excellent presentation.

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