I Have Become The Adopted Son of Hopewell Valley
About 25 years ago, Timothy Stives was at a service in a little known, out of the way cemetery in the Sourland Mountains region. Upon walking the grounds he came across two grave stones with his last name, those of Mary and Jonathan Stives. This got Timothy to do some research, and with the assistance of the keepers of Stroudsburg Cemetery, he was able to trace his history back to his fourth-great grandfather, Revolutionary War Hero William Stives, who I portrayed for Hopewell Valley Heritage Weekend. Mary and Jonathan were William's grandchildren. William left scores of descendants, Black and White, and most of his White descendants were unaware he was a Black man until a couple of hundred years after his passing. While it is unknown where William was laid to rest, Timothy had this stone marker created to honor his life. It rests between Mary and Jonathan. The Hopewell history Timothy uncovered assisted Beverly Mills and Elaine Buck in discovering lost members of their family, and the early settlers of the region, which they have put into book form... If These Stones Could Talk, available on Amazon. There's more stories to be told about this region, and more than likely I'll be called upon again to reenact.