|John Westcarre, backdated 1675, Hadley, MA|
IN SEPR 1675 IN YE
XXXI YEAR OFS AGE
This stone, carved by Joseph Nash, is almost certainly backdated. There are a few Nash stones with dates in the 17teens, but most are from the 1720s and 1730s. It would be very unusual for a carver to go 40 years between carving stones, but not very unusual for a carver to commemorate an important citizen who died before the town had a carver. As I have argued before, Nash probably moved west after the 1690s because he was familiar with Boston stones from that era. Perhaps Dr. Westcarre had a wooden marker that was decaying in the 1720s, or perhaps an elderly widow requested a stone for the husband of her youth when Nash came to town.