Order Your Copy of Historic Clermont County An Illustrated History
Historic Clermont County
Order Form


By Pam Troxell

In the Amelia United Methodist Cemetery, there is a headstone that might be one of the most important headstones for Amelia. It is the headstone of Armilla Bodin. Who is Armella Bodin you might ask, well perhaps you may know her by her nickname, Amelia.

Armilla or Armlious Jernegan, was born in Edgartown, Massachusetts on September 11, 1805. She was the daughter of David Jernegan, Sr. and Armlious Jernegan. The Jernegan family moved to the Amelia area as a part of the Massachusetts group that moved down during the War of 1812. Her father, David had made his living originally from the sea and now came to farm. We know almost nothing about Amelia's childhood. However, one can speculate it might have been interesting growing up with two ambitious brothers. David, Jr., had a store and started a grist mill with friend John O. Butler, and Henry, who would start a town called Utopia. She met a young man by the name of Charles Wesley Bodin. They were married by Ichabod Temple, a Methodist minister on August 29, 1824. They had at least three children, David (who would later spell the name Boden), Amanda, and Joseph.

Amelia and Charles farmed on a piece property that she inherited from her father David on the Pierce Township (then Ohio Township) side of Amelia, while they performed another duty and perhaps lived on the Batavia Township side of the village. They were the toll takers for the Ohio Turnpike. Stagecoach drivers would drive up to the gate and holler "Amelia!", and Armilla would come out and collect the toll from them.

If Charles' inventory from his estate papers were accurate, the Bodins had a comfortable life. They had some furniture, that including a bed, wash stand, bureau, oil cloth, buggy, wagon, oil cloth, dueling weapons, and a horse (who by the time of Charles death had gone blind).

When their town, then known in Clermont County as Milton (which was a corrupted version of its original name Milltown) was ready to have its own post office in 1836, it was found that there was already a Milton, Ohio. The townspeople didn't know what to name the town. Perhaps it was a stranger asking if the name of the town was Amelia, a stagecoach driver who suggested it, or just the townspeople themselves (they may have been asked so much if the name of the town was Amelia, no one will ever know. In honor of the toll taker, and perhaps the Jernegan family in general, they decided to name the town Amelia.

Amelia watched her children grow up, and perhaps even go to the Civil War, but she would never see the end of that war. For reasons that may have gone with her to the grave, 72-year-old Amelia Bodin, died in the town she grew-up in, bore her name, and where she lived her life-Amelia.