Planning on another clean-up ~ Hopefully for Spring 2013. 
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Betsy Layne Cemetery Clean-Up Project
Betsy Layne, AKA Justell Community Cemetery
Justell / Betsy Layne, Floyd County, Kentucky

Google Earth Aeril View
Click to enlarge
Thank You Google Earth
for this photo.
From Prestonsburg Limits: Head S-SE on US23/460 and drive about 13 miles.
Turn right onto Scalf Road,
over one-lane bridge.
More directions to follow.


Another Cemetery Clean-up!!! Yes, I am planning the next phase for the Betsy Layne Cemetery. During the first year we worked on revealing the "lost" or "hidden" headstones, cutting back vines, weeds, brush, dead and broken trees, and more. Fences are torn down, and history is slowly getting lost in the hills of Eastern Kentucky.
During Phase 2, I am working on collecting donations (monetary or your own labor) to remove the piles of trees and brush that were created from the first cleanup. Also, I would further like to remove only the trees that are dead, and not yet fallen. If anyone knows of a tree service company in the area who would be intersted in helping, email me: I have permission to use a portion of land at the bottom of the hill for the dumping of agricultural waste. The trash will be taken care of.
Keep checking back for schedule.

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  Click here to visit rootsweb /'s information on the Betsy Layne Cemetery
Clicking the link above will guide you away from this website.



After three years, and two or so visits each year, my mother and I were able to find the headstones of my Second-Great Grandparents (Joseph B. & Lucy Colegrove) and their Grand-Daughter, Lucy May Colegrove.  Joseph and Lucy's headstone was completely covered by kudzu vines, as are many other flat headstone markers.


I visited the Betsy Layne Cemetery in 2008 with my mother, whom I do 98% of my genealogy travels with.  We were both welcomed by the cemetery's neighbors and getting to the cemetery was not a huge task.  Unfortunately for us, we did not find what we were looking for.  Although a small portion of the cemetery is a much cleaner terrain, the majority of the cemetery is mostly covered with vines and brush.


Who is Betsy Layne?  According to a local resident (owns land where Betsy Layne's house once stood), census records from 1840 - 1860, and research from University of Kentucky show that Betsy Layne was Elizabeth Mahone Johns.  I have three different records showing her birth year as 1809, 1810, and 1819.  I agree more with her being born 1809 or 1810.  One family tree from shows that she died on October 16, 1875.  Elizabeth Johns married Tandy Middleton Layne (1805 - 1841) on April 21, 1831.  Together, Elizabeth "Betsy" and Tandy had somewhere between six and eight children.  Different records show some children and their names, while other records only show the number of people residing with the head of household.  Compiled from several resources, Tandy died shortly after their last child was born.  Betsy Layne then had to raise all of the children on her own, and she did so while residing in the same house.  At one time, Tandy Layne owned two slaves, I believe a Justice and an Elliot.

The original location of the Betsy Layne village was founded in 1875 and named for Elizabeth "Betsy" Layne.  This original location was on the Levisa Fork of the Big Sandy River.  There was a post office in the village and mail was delivered by train.  Between 1875 and 1908 the one-lane Betsy Layne Bridge was built and the post office was moved across the current 4-line highway, in addition to the Betsy Layne village (now town).  The existing Betsy Layne and Post Office opened May 1, 1908.  The original Betsy Layne village was renamed Justell, possibly for two slaves (Justice and Elliott) that were owned by the Layne Family.  The Layne family owned a lot of the land from Pike County to the limits of Prestonsburg.  The Layne family still owns land in Floyd County.  So why was Elizabeth "Betsy" Layne so important?  Most people in the community are unaware of the history and why numerous landmarks, schools, businesses, roads, etc. are named after her, Betsy Layne. 

The Betsy Layne (aka, Justell Community) Cemetery holds treasures and stories untold.

 Lieutenant Lindsey R. Layne, Q.M. 39 KY Infantry
Help reserve a better resting place for Lindsey R. Layne- a member of the United States Military
(At this time I am unable to prove what branch of the military, considering time, probably the Army)

BETSY LAYNE CEMETERY DESERVES A CLEAN-UP.  Please participate and help preserve long lost history- soon to be over-taken by mother nature and gone forever. 

Please email me for more information.  Over the next two weeks more information, photos and location directions will be posted.  Please continue to check back often and watch for the June date the clean-up will be held.

Entering the community of
Betsy Layne: US23 / US460

Once you turn onto Scalf Road of US23/US460, you'll see these signs

The one lane bridge which takes
you in to the Justell Community

This photo was taken just exiting the
one lane bridge

This entrance is located between
two houses at the bottom of cemetery

Lieutenant Lindsey Layne
R.Q.M. 39 KY Infantry

Under the left/center tree rests Lieut.
Lindsey Layne

Jack L Church
Pvt. US Army
Over-view of George Moles Jr.
George A Moles Jr. / Kentucky
S 1c. USNR - World War II

Raymond Goble
Raymond Goble / Kentucky
CPL 110 INF - World War II
Archie D. Goble / Kentucky
Sgt / TRP C7 Cavalry WWII / Korea
Ben D. Blackburn / Kentucky
TEC 4 / PRCHT INF / World War II

Under all these over-grown vines is
atleast 6+ more military headstones




 Cleaning up this cemetery will take a lot of volunteers!
Enviornmental waste bags will be needed, water for volunteers as well a lunch and other items. 

If you would like to help by donating to the cost of cleaning up the Betsy Layne Cemetery, click here.
Your donation is greatly appreciated. 
Thank you very much, Danielle.