Known Tombstone Carvers

of Pennsylvania

A Project of  the PAGenWeb Archives

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These pages seek to identify and document the known tombstone carvers in the state of Pennsylvania, from all time periods.  If any one has any information about additional tombstone carvers to be included, or have additional information to add to an existing carver,  please feel free to contact Ellis Michaels or Bill Plack

William Wall

(Biographies and Photographs contibuted by Bill Plack)

     William Wall was born in Oxford, England in 1767. He was married to Lucy Hardiman, and two of their children, William Coventry Wall (c.1810-1886) and Sarah Wall, (b.1813) were born in England, where William was known as a painter and sculptor.

     Different sources show the Wall family coming to the United States between 1816 and 1821; they settled in Mount Pleasant, Westmoreland County. Their children Alfred S. (1825-1896), Helen, and Leander were born in Mount Pleasant. William Coventry Wall and Alfred S. Wall both became fairly well known landscape painters in western Pennsylvania, as did William’s grandson, A.Bryan Wall, 1861-1935). 1832 tax records for Mount Pleasant Borough show William Wall as a stone cutter.

     I have seen stones by William Wall in seven cemeteries in Westmoreland and Fayette counties, mostly dated 1821-1825. A few, including the George Swann stone shown below, were dated before 1821 but it is believed that those earlier dated stones were backdated, considering the accepted date of Wall’s arrival in the U.S.

     Although all of Wall’s stones are beautifully carved, his most remarkable work was the stone carved for Clement Burleigh, Esq. This stone has more decorative details than any of the others, including several Masonic symbols. It has been suggested that this stone may have been erected in his honor by his fellow lodge brothers. This stone was originally located in the old United Presbyterian graveyard on Church Street in Mount Pleasant but when the use of that cemetery was discontinued the stone was removed to the Mount Pleasant Cemetery on the north edge of town.

     William Wall and his family moved to the Pittsburgh area c.1835. The 1850 census lists him as a carver and gilder, living in Allegheny City, now a part of Pittsburgh. He died in Allegheny City in 1857 and is buried in Pittsburgh’s Allegheny Cemetery.

printable text version of biography

Known Examples of

William Wall's

 stone carvings


Old Zion Lutheran Cemetery

East Huntington Township, Westmoreland County



Middle Presbyterian Cemetery

Mt. Pleasant Township, Westmoreland County



Mount Pleasant Cemetery

Mt. Pleasant Borough, Westmoreland County



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Tombstone Carver Page maintained by Ellis Michaels

this page was last updated 27 Apr 2011

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