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Thursday, September 29, 2022

Solley Cemetery of Anne Arundel County, Maryland

Amazing ancestor’s graves that we found at Solley’s Cemetery, in Anne Arundel County, MD (2019) — his great-great-great grandparents.

Solley Cemetery

Glen Burnie, Anne Arundel County, Maryland

I’ve been working with 23AndMe, FindAGrave, and some family ancestry sites to develop a way to calculate and view relationships.

One of the more interesting families we came across has its own graveyard in Maryland. There are only 44 memorials, and some do not have a photo. And there are several family names located there: Chairs, Chase, Ingram, Johnson, Moreland, Phelps, Pumphrey, Solley, Stallings, Thronton, Williams, Warfield.

The challenge was to map out the relationships between all of the headstones. Secondarily, we wanted to see if we could solve the mysterious origins of one allegedly adopted boy, Adam H. Johnson.

Fortunately, there are enough records online that I could map out nearly every single one of the gravestones, There are a few mystery outliers, though. For example, I cannot figure out how the Warfields connect to the Solleys. Is it through a Johnson, or is it through a Williams? We do know that most of these dear souls lived in the same neighborhood for several decades, and across generations, so that explains much of the mingling between the families. But there are so very many Johnsons in the area, that we were not able to pinpoint a single shared connection that lead to Adam’s adoptive parent(s).

It was interesting to see how many people remarried after death, and sad to realize how many infants were buried there. Clearly, the Solleys, Williams and Johnsons and Warfields were not only tight-knit family but also good neighbors who took in other people’s young and elderly, too.

Here is a visualized version of what I discovered about Solley Cemetery:

Flowchart of Solley Cemetery in Anne Arundel, County, MD

My favorite sites for Genealogy include FamilyTreeNow, FindAGrave, BillionGraves, and for genetic research, 23AndMe.

Soon, I’ll be exploring Ancestry and Ancestry DNA, but cannot recommend them yet.

One specific document that served as a key explanation was this court document about disputed estates of Sarah Ann Willams (Pumphrey) Solley and her children.

I plan to take a trip to the Solley graveyard soon to see if there is any information that has been lost. Thank you to everyone who has shared their family information online, to those who copied and posted documents or posted in public discussions, who created these immensely useful sites, and who care greatly about keeping families in heart and mind.

I will rewrite the chart and post it into bulleted text form below:

  • Sarah Ann Chase: 1888-1929
  • Elizabeth Ann Ingram: 20 Jul 1810 – 21 Dec 1883
  • Archibald Johnson: 16 Dec 1851 – 20 Jun 1934
  • Emma L. Johnson: 1883-1941
  • James A. Johnson: 1880-1948
  • Margaret A. “Warfield” Johnson: 18 Nov 1854 – 4 Jan 1927
  • Margaret Ann Johnson: 17 Aug 1888 – 13 Sep 1899
  • William S. Pumphrey (infant): d. 4 Mar 1811
  • William Stuart Pumphrey: 1820-4 Mar 1844
  • Bessie E. Solley: 23 Oct 1898 – 5 Oct 1915
  • James M. Solley – 1898 – 1915
  • James William Solley – 25 Apr 1884 – 8 Mar 1946
  • James Williams Solley – 1857 – 1916
  • Jemima Solley: d. 19 Jun 1880-1948
  • Lillie Estelle “Moreland” Solley: 1864 – 1940
  • Thomas Solley: 1757 – 8 Jan 1817
    • Thomas Solley: 31 May 1814 – 2 Feb 1875
      • Thomas W. Solley, Sr: 1849 – 16 Apr 1918 (Cedar Hill Cemetery, see below)
        • Thomas A. Solley: d. 15 Oct 1882
        • Mary T. Solley (infant): 1 Jan 1875 – 5 Feb 1875
        • Sarah Ann Solley (infant): d. 20 Jun 1880
        • Charles “Charlie” Solley (infant) – d. 31 Mar 1862
        • Jemima Solley (infant): d. 31 Mar 1880
      • Richard Solley (infant): 7 May 1851 – 27 Jun 1851
      • Ella E. Solley: 5 Jun 1863 – 17 May 1950
      • George H. Solley: 10 Nov 1850 – 19 Apr 1914
      • Charles L. Solley: 9 May 1866 – 14 Apr 1921
  • Daisy Estelle Stallings: 8 Dec 1890 – 12 Oct 1906
  • Earnest Stallings: 21 Aug 1884 – 23 Oct 1886
  • Elias Stallings: 7 Feb 1849 – 2 Sep 1914
  • Elias G. Stallings: 1896 – 1928
  • Estelle S. “Johnson” Thornton: 8 Nov 1874 – 10 Dec 1909
  • Richard T. Warfield: 1 Dec 1858 – 17 Apr 1886
  • William A. Warfield: 1863 – 1942
  • Mary Williams (teen): 1800 – 10 Oct 1816
  • William Williams: 1797 – 23 Jun 1852
    • Sarah Ann “Williams” Solley: 19 Jan 1824 – 18 Sep 1904
    • Rachel R. “Williams” Chairs: 6 Jan-1829 – 9 Mar 1899
      • Rose W. “Chairs” Phelps: 11 Nov 1860 – 7 Jul 1892
        • Sara L Phelps: 23 Jan 1887 – 12 Aug 1952
        • William Theodore Chairs: d. 6 Jul 1851
    • Thomas B. Williams: 1833 – 24 Jul 1884
    • William G. Williams: 1839 – 1913
    • Margaret Williams: 1840 – 21 May 1862
  • Sarah E. Williams: 1844 – 1909


  • Thomas W. Solley, Sr: 1849 – 16 Apr 1918
  • (m.) Sarah W. [Washington Williams] Solley: 1844 – 1912 [Daughter of D.C. couple: Wilkerson G. Williams (1805-1868) and Mary M. Nash (1815-1875).]
    • Jemima A. “Solley” Stegman: 1882 – 1961
      • Helen Audrey “Stegman” Dashiell: 1915 – 2000
      • (m.) Adam Howard Johnson: 10 Aug 1907 – 30 Dec 1946
  • Mary Virginia Williams (d. 1902) (sister of Sarah W Solley).


  • Rachel R. Solley: b.1858
  • Allen Warfield: b. 1823
  • Ann R. Williams: b. 1827
  • William C[larence] Johnson: b. 1828
  • Mary Williams “Solley” Johnson: b. 1847
  • George W. Johnson: unknown
  • Arthur Thornton: Unknown
  • Rachel R. Solley: b. 1860
  • Minnie Solley: b. 1860

Update: In 2019, we found the location of this cemetery. It is located on a side road by a townhouse complex. There is a lot next to it that looks like it belongs to a construction company. First thing to know, there are ticks in this graveyard! Ick. Put your socks over your pants, try not to walk in any of the taller weeds; and check yourself when you walk out. The graves are old and dirty and hard to read due to weather and dark slime. I tried to clean them with as much water and soap as I had, but it didn’t make a dent.

It was cold that day, and we ran out of energy and battery power on our phones. So, we did not stay as long as I would have liked perhaps. There is a metal fence surrounding the graveyard, and at first we thought we had to figure out a way to climb over the fence, but no — there’s a gate. Duh.

I would suggest you take a piece of paper and charcoal or graphite to make a scratching of the graves. Some are broken and some are half buried or partially inaccessible, and others are completely unreadable. I don’t know if it would be better to dig them up or leave them where they are. The stone is very heavy and I’d hate to damage them further. I may return in the future, but I was so happy that we found this site and were able to be with family that we never knew existed before 23AndMe and FamilySearch revealed it to us. Asking them for magic spirit help didn’t seem to work any noticeable way — but in the real world, we enjoyed having a historical connection for some inexplicable reason. We only have found one genetic cousin connected to this site, and she knew nothing about it.

We will be looking for more information and explanations and update when we can. I wish we had news articles or family info about who they were. There is some, but the story is mostly lost. And that’s part of what we’re trying to do — reconstruct what’s been lost. Because, virtually everyone deserves to be remembered.

1860 Map of Anne Arundel cropped to show location of Thomas W Solley in the same area of this cemetery (center and 2/3 down).
JD Uyhttps://www.jduy.com
Hello, I am the owner and administrator of this site and bulletin board.

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