Arlington National Cemetery

This week, I traveled to DC for business and on my way to the airport, took a quick visit to Arlington National Cemetery.  I went to the cemetery with one purpose truly, to go to the grave site of Henry A. Greene.  Henry, is the grandfather of a woman I met a few weeks ago who was looking for information about him.  She came to a presentation I gave last month as part of Black History Month programming for Andrew Jackson’s The Hermitage and we sat for some time afterwards to work together on her family tree.

As we sat together that afternoon, one of the things we learned was that Henry was buried at Arlington National Cemetery. There was even a picture already added to his Find-A-Grave entry. However, I thought it would still be meaningful for me to visit, and at the same time, I could learn more about the cemetery.

Arlington is a big cemetery! More than 600 acres. Fortunately, the cemetery makes it easy to find who you are looking for. At the front desk, if you provide the name, staff will give you the location and burial number.  You can also do this online using the cemetery’s Explorer site (also available as a smartphone app).  A grave site shuttle then takes you to the section. Henry is buried in Section 17. Section 17 is near the back of the cemetery and I’ve marked the approximate location of his grave site with a red X on the map

After the shuttle dropped me off, finding his grave was not difficult. Each headstone is clearly numbered and I found Henry exactly as the bells rang 12 pm.

approaching Henry’s grave from the back

Sgt. Henry A. Greene

You’ll notice Henry’s headstone is not the standard government-issued one, which means it was paid for privately, most likely his family. I am working with his granddaughter to try and find out more information about him – he was Cherokee, orphaned as a child, and adopted by European parents.  There is an obituary that exists for him which I still need to order, so we will see what we can learn about Sgt. Greene as time passes. It was very moving to be there to visit with him though.

Then, in my good genealogy citizen duty, I took a few pictures for BillionGraves and Find-A-Grave.  And, as I was there, I thought of looking for Koonces buried there and going to their grave sites, but ultimately decided that would take too long. However, as I was walking down Henry’s row taking pictures for BillionGraves and Find-A-Grave, lo and behold, I come across Earl L. Koontz! Different spelling, but I’ll research him any way for my Koonce Surname Project.

Earl L. Koontz

Once home, I did search and there are 11 Koonces and 30 Koontzs buried there. Looks like I have some researching to do! All in all, it was a good trip. I took a tour, which was quite educational, and I hope to get back again.

Comments (7)

  1. David Samuelsen

    what happened to the photos? I have quite a sizable number of the Koonces and few Koontz’s in my family, mostly in and around Jones County, North Carolina.

  2. Taneya Koonce (Post author)

    Hi David – the pictures should be fixed now. Please let me know what Koonce families you have in your lineages – I’d love to know!

  3. Ramona La Roche

    My sister friend and I had an opportunity to visit Calverton veterans cemetery in Riverhead Long Island last summer. What an incredible trip! My father and 4 of my friends relative’s are interred at the site. Between the wonderful imagery of all the white tombstones and the deers behind us it was quite visually exciting as well as a great educational genealogy trip.

  4. Taneya Koonce (Post author)

    Thanks for sharing Ramona. I hope to get to Calverton one day also. My grandfather is buried there. He died when I was 12 and I attended the funeral but it would be nice to go back.

  5. Cynthia

    Taneya…thank you so Very much for visiting my grandfather. I’m sitting here wiping the tears from my eyes. I know now why I needed to stop at that library on that particular day. It was a divine meeting. I need to know my Cherokee lineage…and I thank you so very much for guiding me along and helping me find answers. I am planning on going to Arlington this summer….so looking forward to spending time there. Again…thank you…Blessings to you.. Cynthia

  6. Taneya Koonce (Post author)

    Hi Cynthia! Of course it was my pleasure! I am so happy I could help you begin this journey to learn more about your family.

  7. Pingback: Koonces in Arlington National Cemetery | Koonce Genealogy

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