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Castor Cemetery
Leesville
Vernon Parish
Louisiana  USA
Postal Code: 71446

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Cemetery notes and/or description:
Directions: From Leesville go east on Lulu Street/LA Hwy. 468 about 4 miles to Castor Cemetery and Church is located on the left side of this road on a hill just before the intersection of LA Hwy. 184 (to Ft. Polk).

History: Castor Baptist Church was organized in 1868. The first meeting place was a small log house with mud chimney at one end that had been used as a Sunday School prior to this time. On 15 October 1872, the Vernon Baptist Association was organized at Castor Baptist Church. N. H. Bray was elected moderator, and
M. H. Stanly Sr. was elected clerk, a position that he occupied for 31successive years. Rev. J. E. Melton preached the sermon for this meeting. In 1875, a second log house was erected a few hundred feet southwest of the present building. In 1890, the first lumber house was built. When the community first decided to build a bigger and better church house, Bill Smart offered to donate sufficient heart pine lumber to construct the building if the church membership would pay for the bare cost of cutting. This generous offer was accepted, and the lumber was cut at "Uncle Billy's" water-powered sawmill. Mr. Bagget was the chief carpenter and M. H. Stanly, Sr. was chairman of the building committee. The building was a simple box house located a few yards south of the present building. Lathing and siding were added when money became available.

In 1904, an extension of 12 feet was added to the west end to furnish additional space needed to accommodate the growing membership. Floor space was doubled in 1920-21 by an addition on the south side of the building.

In 1945, another small addition was made to the southwest corner of the building. The present building was erected and the old building removed in 1952. John Reese Smart Jr. and Calvin Jones made generous donations of labor and talent during this building program. Brick veneer was added to the front in 1967, along with other changes. The fellowship hall was constructed during 1968.

One of the first ministers of Castor was Jehu Self. Several members who served Castor tirelessly over the years was John R. Gill, Sr., F. T. Smith, Sr., John and Albert Williams, Ira L. Dickerson, Fred Pollard, Miss Viola Turner, Mrs. Etta Gill, C. O. Gill. In 1935, a project was instituted to identify all the unmarked graves in the cemetery with concrete markers. Mrs. M. A. Cavanaugh and Mrs. Warren Nessmith were selected for this task, as they were the ones able to name every grave. John Dennis of Leesville donated the markers.

Castor Cemetery is one of the largest rural graveyards in Vernon Parish, and has been enlarged several times over the years. Older burials reside near the Church while the newer section is located across the driveway to the East.
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Castor Cemetery
Added by: SFC USA RET Duffie & Kathy
 
Castor Cemetery
Added by: MoonFlower
 
Castor Cemetery
Added by: SFC USA RET Duffie & Kathy
 
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