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The Old Chatham Cemetery

The Correct Name of this Cemetery is Still Unknown

The Old Chatham Cemetery. Now Closed and all monuments removed.

Photo taken near the back of the Old Cemetery
Note the very heavy brush in some areas.

The Old Chatham Cemetery was one of a number used before Maple Leaf Cemetery and St Anthony's Cemetery were opened in 1871. The old Chatham Cemetery is actually located in VERY close proximity to the new cemeteries. It is located under a small park behind what is now the grocery store at the corner of Indian Creek Road and Queen Street. At the moment at least if you drive behind the grocery store, and park in the corner to avoid being hit by trucks, you will see a medium size park in behind. Almost all of that park is the old cemetery area. On the Indian Creek Road side there is only about 6 feet between the first old graves and the ditch there. The back goes to within about 50 feet of that area. The front of the old cemetery is marked almost exactly by the back edge of the pavement, and the side opposite Indian Creek varies in distance from the edge due to trees and brush on the angle.

We must bear in mind that the old cemetery was "Moved". However, we must also realize that this means that they would have done the best job that they could under those circumstances. There WILL still be remains there today. Recent marked graves at that time would be moved. Old ones would sometimes not be. Those in the communal area (Potter's field possibly?) along Indian Creek road may not have been as apt to be moved. Present day digging in these former cemeteries by service crews pretty much prove that these cemeteries were seldom cleaned out completely of remains. Such stories of cemeteries being moved and no graves remaining are myths.

The city opened the new cemeteries outside of town because they began to realize that these large cemeteries in town were not good when they were getting water from points and wells near by. This was a bad set of circumstances for disease to set in.

We do not know of any monuments remaining in this cemetery. They were all moved to Old Maple Leaf and Old St Anthony's when those cemeteries were new. There are MANY stories today on how so many of the old monuments in Maple Leaf and St Anthony's that date before 1872 have no remains under them. The family would move the stone. They would not want to disturb the recently buried remains.

See more photos of the Old Chatham Cemetery here.

NOTE - The following information may be found to be offensive by some people. It is though presented as it is a part of our historical heritage. Please view with caution"

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We believe that the following information pertains to THIS cemetery. However, at that moment it cannot be proven for certain.

Appearing in Chatham Weekly Planet June 14 1860 concerning a council meeting on June 8, approximately 13 years before Maple Leaf and St Anthony's Cemeteries were opened.

Appearing in Chatham Tri Weekly Planet on June 16 1860