From intersection of TX 22 and 3rd Street in Cranfills Gap, drive north 0.4 mile on TX 22, turn right on CR 4145and drive 3.4 mile to Saint Olaf Lutheran Rock Church (on left); cemetery is beside and north of the church and easily seen.
Saint Olaf Lutheran Kirke (Rock Church) was built by hand from stone dug from nearby Swenson Mountain near Gary Creek and hauled by wagon to the present hilltop site by volunteers of the Norwegian community. The church is basically the same today as it was when it was built and first services held in 1887, even though uncompleted. The 1800 pound Swedish steel bell would not fit in the 80-foot-high steeple, so the steeple was dismantled, the bell put in place, and the steeple built back around it as you see in the photo today. During the first years, the church had only a dirt floor and boxing planks for seats. A tall round wood burning stove was in the center of the church, and still is in use today as the only heat. Although handmade pews and a wooden plank floor were later added, lighting consisted of candelabras, then carbide powered lights. There is no electricity in the church today. Around the turn of the century, members decided the church would look better and so plastered the outside rock work. As present restoration continues, church and community members are insisting the original rock be preserved and not covered. Even before the church was built, Siri Swenson, wife of Bersven Swenson was buried in the cemetery in 1885.
This churchyard cemetery is located behind the Saint Olaf rock church and overlooks a peaceful and lush valley. The graves are lined up in rows and are interspersed with shrubs. The property is well maintained and has room to accommodate future burials. There are many taller and older stones on the grounds. This would be an enjoyable cemetery to stroll and reflect upon life.
GPS Coordinates: 31.79222, -97.77381
- Added: 2 Jan 2000
- Find A Grave Cemetery: #4979
File Name ·
This photo was not uploaded because this cemetery already has 20 photos
This photo was not uploaded because you have already uploaded 5 photos to this cemetery
Invalid File Type
Birth and death years unknown.
1 photo picked...
2 photos picked...
Uploading 1 Photo
Uploading 2 Photos
1 Photo Uploaded
2 Photos Uploaded
"Not a photo"