The Coleman Cemetery began with the establishment of the city of Coleman in 1876 or soon after this date. From old histories, it was learned that the first man to be buried in Coleman was gored by a bull on Home Creek; his name was Shannon. He was cremated 15 years later by J. L. Spicer, and his ashes took north by his father in a silver urn to be placed in a vault by his mother. The second man was killed by a drunken man on the street between what is now Bowens Drug and the Carousel. J. L. Spicer buried all the people here for 15 years. It is not known if the early burial ground was where it is today, but it is felt that it was. There was no purchase of land for a cemetery until 1877 or 1878, when J. F. Gordon headed a committee to arrange for a cemetery. The committee purchased thirty acres at 25 cents per acre, located about a mile south of the courthouse. In 1880, the cemetery was divided into IOOF, Mason, Citizens, and Negro sections. It was not known if there was any sort of a cemetery association at that time or if everyone took care of their own plots. By 1921, the cemetery was in need of additional room. In October of 1921, 2500 square feet were donated for use by veterans of World War I. The need for care was also realized, as the Coleman Cemetery Association was chartered in December of 1921 for "the maintenance of a public cemetery," which was to exist for 50 years. In December of 1923, an additional 8 1/4 acres was purchased for cemetery use. By 1938, however, the City of Coleman had grown to a population of over 5000, which brought it under a Texas state constitutional provision that the city would have to maintain a cemetery for its citizens. In 1939, a Cemetery Committee representing the citizens, Odd Fellows, Masons, and American Legion deeded the entire cemetery to the city, with the reservation that the fraternal areas be restricted to its members. In 1945 the area known as the "East Extension" consisting of about 10 acres was added. The Comanche Road at that time ran east from Guadalupe Street (which was the Shields Road), beginning where Hollywood Drive is today, turning southeast at the southeast corner of the original cemetery, so in 1945 this road was the south boundary of the cemetery. Since that time, the Comanche road has been rerouted and additional land has been purchased, not all of which has been developed. As of 1988, there were 72 acres, which were fenced, and additional land outside of this fenced area.
The cemetery contains at least 8000 marked graves and hundreds, possibly thousands more that are unmarked. The oldest graves marked with inscribed stones have the date of 1878 and 1879. There are six with this year. Three are located in the center of map page three and the other three are found in map page nine, all along the south side, each in different sections.
To go to the cemetery from any street in Coleman running north and south, go to 9th Street and turn east. This street will dead end into the cemetery.
GPS Coordinates: 31.81774, -99.4102
- Added: 19 Feb 2001
- Find A Grave Cemetery: #322488
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