The most visited graves at Woodland Cemetery in Dayton, Ohio, are, not surprisingly, those of the brave early aviators Orville and Wilbur Wright. The Wrights are world-famous for their accomplishments, and countless people travel to see their final resting places. But if you ask the Woodland Cemetery staff to name the most visited grave of a person who was not famous in life, they will point you to the famous statue of a boy and a dog that marks the grave of little Johnny Morehouse. In 1860 (so the legend says), five year old Johnny, a cobbler’s son, was playing when he fell into the canal. He drowned, and when he was buried, his faithful dog refused to leave the graveside. The dog stands forever immortalized in stone, guarding over a peacefully sleeping little boy, a paw extended to shield him from harm.
The statue is hard to photograph for all of the trinkets left over and around it. Most are children’s toys or books, things that Johnny left behind all too soon over 150 years ago.