Gardner Township Cemetery History

 

Gardner was settled in 1857 and almost immediately there was a need for a burial ground on this wild frontier. A little hill southwest of town was chosen and laid out in a square with six east-west lanes and a roadway around the outside. Lots outside the roadway on all four sides were potter's fields. The potter's field on the east is the only one left today. A diagonal road from the northwest entrance to the southeast exit, now closed to provide more lots, was for may years bordered with beautiful pines set out by the pioneers. The first plat was not recorded with the Register of Deeds until 1866. It showed 154 lots, which was plenty for those days. The cemetery was later expanded by the closing of some lanes and three additions. To finance the cemetery, settlers were urged to buy lots. A drawing was held, accounting for the fact that the earliest graves are scattered all over the original plat. There are many unmarked graves now because wooden headboards used in those days have rotted away. The oldest cemetery records were lost in an early fire and the ownership of some lots and early burials will never be known. Some of the oldest graves are two Sponable children 1857 and 1858 and their mother 1859; in 1858 Jacob Victor, first settler, and S.S. Stevens; 1859 and 1861 Marshall children; 1859 and 1861 George Brock and son; 1860 a young mother Angeletta Shittaker and infant son; and 1861 Henry Gorseline who died of a gunshot wound after the first bushwhacker raid.

 

A corporation quick-claim deed #977090 dated Dec 17, 1973 was filed for the KCP&L Co and Gardner Township for acreage south of the original cemetery giving the Gardner Township clear title of the property.

 

The Baker Addition was gifted to the Gardner Township by Dale and Marcelle Baker in 1998.

 

The Gardner Cemetery Association was organized in 1925 with Mrs. J. P. Williams president and Lulu Perkins secretary. Perpetual Care was instituted. Gertrude McCreary served as secretary for 24 years. Flossy Donovan served as secretary for 12 years. Margaret Gay served as secretary for several years. Hildred Sawyer served a secretary for several years.

 

Following is a list of officers over the years:

 

President:

Lepha Myers 1948 -1966

Dale Lawrence 1967 - 1973

Harold Quaintance 1974 - 1978

Otto Sawyer 1979 - 1990

Harold Wolf 1991 - 2001

Charles Jones 2002

Shirley VanArsdale 2003 - 2018

 

 

Vice-President:

Mr Bigelow 1963 - 1964

Harold Quaintance 1984 - 1986

Jim Kincaide 1992 - 2000

Richard McCreary 2001 - 2004

Kim Allen 2005, 2006

Joan Jones 2007

Gerald E Gay 2008, 2009

Don Hermon 2010, 2011

Marcia Gay 2012 - 2018

 

 

Secretary:

Gertrude McCreary 1940 - 1964

Flossie Donavan 1965 - 1974

Margaret Gay 1975 - 1984

Hildred Sawyer 1985 - 1995

Laura McKaig 1996 - 2009

Gerald E. Gay 2010 - 2016

Lisa Berg 2017 - 2018

 

 

Treasurer:

Mr Jones 1961 - 1963

Ed Squires 1963 - 1983

Naoma Kincaide 1984 - 1997

Kimberly Allen 1998 - 2004

Laura Gourley 2005 - 2006

Louise Snavely 2007 - 2012

Debbie Johnson 2012 -2018

 

 

Sexton:

Ed Squires 1963 - 1979

Wayne Kingsley 1980 - 1990

Dale Sawyer 1991 - 2006

Glen & Janet Bonar 2007 - 2018

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