Local Historian Cleans Up Wollet Family Graveyard
Local historian Ken Keebaugh of Hustontown recently cleaned and reset tombstones in the long-neglected Wollet family graveyard. This graveyard is located 1.5 miles north of the village of Ft. Littleton along the Forbes Road Trail road and one-half mile south of Route 475. There are 20 marked graves, and family lore says there are also unmarked graves of employees who worked at the Wollet Inn. All marked graves are immediate relatives of Michael and Margaret (nee Lingenfelter) Wollet, who were buried there in 1833 and 1832. Their son-in-law, William Keebaugh, was buried there in 1870. Ken is a great-great-great grandson of the Wollets. Other relatives buried there are Brant, Cromer, Cunningham, Kemp and Sipes.
Keebaugh said he has been planning on cleaning his ancestors’ resting place since he began his geneaology research over 30 years ago. When Ken was a child, his father, Wayne Keebaugh, took him to the graveyard located on the farm adjacent to where his family has lived since 1773. At that time, how these people were related was a mystery to Ken.
Around 1800, Michael Wollet moved from York Co., Pa., to Ft. Littleton, where he operated a blacksmith shop. After his father in-law, Jacob Lingenfelter, who operated a general store in Abbottstown on the border of York and Adams counties, willed money to his daughter Margaret in 1806, the Wollets began operating an inn along the Forbes Road which was the main road between Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. Two of the Wollet daughters, Margaret and Catherine, married two of Isaac Kiebach’s sons, George and William. Michael Wollet and his wife, Margaret, died and were buried in the family graveyard in 1833 and 1832. George and Margaret Keebaugh owned the inn from 1833 until 1854. When his wife died, George sold the inn to his brother-in-law, Col. Benjamin Woolet. Sylvester Woolet operated the inn after his father’s death. The Woolets also operated the Washington Hotel located at the courthouse square in McConnellsburg; the Indian Queen Hotel in Hustontown along Pitt Street between Church Street and Rail Road Street; and a hotel in Mount Union.