The Grave of Joseph Bucklin, 4th

Joseph Bucklin 4th GravestoneThe gravestone reads: “Sacred to the memory of Capt. Joseph Bucklin who departed this life December 27, 1790. Aged 70 years 10 months 1 day. Having through life sustained the character of an industrious and honest man.”


Family of Joseph Bucklin 4th GravestonesThis photo has gravestones of two children, James and Sally, whose headstones are on the viewer’s left. The gravestone of wife Zerviah, and gravestone of Joseph are on the viewer’s right.

Headstone composition is slate in “good” condition in June 2000, with good legibility. The stone carvers was Gabriel Allen (identification of carver made by John Sterling) This same carver also did the gravestone of Zeriah.

This gravestone data is a combination of four transcriptions of cemetery headstones:
1. Frank Williamson (FW) done between 1857 and 1877 – 5600 names)
2. Frank Taylor Calef MD (1875-1941) (FTC) done in 1923 – 7500 names
3. John E. Sterling (JES) done in 1994-1997 – 30,000 names.
4. Leonard H. Bucklin, (LHB) June 2000, in company of John E. Sterling and Elizabeth Johnson of Spaulding House Research Library.

More on the graves in the family plot

This family plot has Col. Hezekah Sabin in the back row of graves and his descendents in front of him. The very left front corner of the plot has the grave of his grandson James Bucklin, who died soon after birth. Thus the Joseph Bucklin family began to fill in the line on the front row of graves of this family plot. This line of graves is the end of this line of Bucklins. Although Joseph Bucklin’s siblings and uncles left vigorous lines of descent, the Joseph Bucklin 5th who fired the “First Shot of the Revolution” has no direct descendents.

The grave of Joseph Bucklin 4th’s wife ZERVIAH is on the viewer’s left of the grave of Joseph. Her stone reads: “In memory of Zerviah wife of Capt Joseph Bucklin and daughter of Hezekiah Sabin of Connecticut, who departed this life September 26, 1776 in the 45th year of her age.”

The grave of Sally Bucklin Ensworth, daughter of Nancy Bucklin Ensworth and Gideon Ensworth, is to the viewer’s left of Capt Joseph Bucklin. It shows Sally Bucklin died at age 22 on 10 Nov. 1803.

And then to the viewer’s right (and the last in the line of graves enclosed by the present iron railing, is the gravestone of Nancy Bucklin Ensworth, whose gravestone shows the is the widow of Gideon Ensworth of Canterberry CT, and that she died 28 Sept 1826. Nancy was a teen age girl when her sister Sally Bucklin was born, and the death of her sister when Sally was only 14 probably was the inspiration for Nancy naming her first born daughter “Sally Bucklin Ensworth”. The tragedy was that this daughter also preceded Nancy in death. Nancy’s headstone shows it was erected by Hezekiah Sabin.

Location of Joseph Bucklin 4th’s Grave

How to Find the North Burial Ground

Town of: PROVIDENCE – The historic cemetery – oldest stone is dated 1711
Rhode Island Rhode Island Cemetery Transcriptions project ID as Cemetery is #: PVOO1

To get to it, exit from I – 95 at the Branch Ave. exit, and you will almost immediately find the cemetery. Bear right toward Main Street, where the entrance is on Branch before Main Street.

How to Find the Joseph Bucklin Family Graves in the North Burial Ground

Bucklin Family Graves After CleanupJohn Sterling knows theJoseph Bucklin 4th grave site in Providence RI location by his method notation as SEC: AA LOT: MAP:00646 — But for the average person, find the site of Joseph Bucklin 4th’s grave by entering the North Burial Ground at Providence, RI, and then traveling Northerly on a lane in the cemetery marked as Elm Street. The area you are looking for is shown on this photo. (Click to enlarge and clarify the photo, and print it out.)

Map of North Burial Ground, Providence, Rhode IslandClick to enlarge the map. You will get a large map with scroll bars to get a good view of details of the route to the site. Print out the enlarged map and take it with you to the cemetery.


Joseph Bucklin 5th Memorial MarkerThe Joseph Bucklin Society installed this (June, 2003) in the family area of Joseph Bucklin 4th. It memorializes the person who shot the famous shot in 1772, and helps to prevent the identity of Joseph Bucklin from being lost.