This is the grave of a little girl known as “Violin Annie”. Annie was a young girl who lived near my hometown in the late 1800’s. While alive, she was very passionate about her violin. She would play for everyone, and even wanted to become a professional violinist. Unfortunately, she passed away at the age of eleven due to diphtheria. She was buried in Elmwood Cemetery in Southern Illinois. Her parents erected this statue of her above her grave to symbolize her love for violin playing. I had always heard about her, but I wanted to visit her myself. Rumors say if you go to the cemetery at night and listen hard enough, you can hear her playing her violin. They also say that if you visit her grave on Halloween night, you can see her statue glowing.
His son was only five years old when Smith died. Todd Fox, Elmwood superintendent, hung a swing from a holly tree near his grave to make cemetery visits easier for the child. When the eighty-nine year old holly tree died and had to be replaced, the process of replacing old and decaying trees in the cemetery was named the Jeffrey Smith Reforestation Project. Friends did not forget young Jeffrey. In 2000 they erected another swing so that the boy could continue his visits to his father’s grave.