AKA Garfield Cemetery
Buchanan County, Missouri
Directions: Calvary Cemetery was a Catholic cemetery located on Garfield Avenue between 14th and 16th Streets in St. Joseph, Buchanan County, Missouri
Notes: Also known as Garfield Cemetery, Calvary Cemetery no longer exists.
Credits: Monica Schirmer Eshelman provided the obituaries and news articles for this cemetery. Photos taken by Franz Bruyere in 2011 and used with permission.
THEY MISUNDERSTAND IT
Catholics Fearful Their Dead Must Be Removed From Calvary
Since the opening of Mt. Olivet cemetery, Memorial day, the impression has gone abroad among Catholics of the city that the remains of their dead who were interred from time to time in the old cemetery Calvary, must be moved, as that churchyard was to be thrown open and made a public tract to sell. A number of Catholics who own lots in the old cemetery deem it an injustice to be compelled to purchase lots in Mt. Olivet for purposes of re-burying the removed dead.
Bishop Burke says the reports are erroneous, that Calvary cemetery will simply be closed, no further burials taking place there. He adds that it is not compulsory on members of the denomination to remove their dead to the new cemetery, but many have expressed their intention of doing so, and it is desired by him. As to the purchase of lots the price demanded is simply sufficient to pay the expenses of keeping a sexton and defraying the expense of beautifying the new burial ground.
Source: St. Joseph Daily News, 4 Jun 1895, p. 6
TO KEEP GRAVES GREEN
Lot Holders in Calvary Cemetery Will Form an Association
There will be a meeting of lot holders in Calvary Cemetery at lodge room No. 2 in the Irish-American building tomorrow evening for the purpose of devising ways and means to keep the cemetery in good repair. Since the opening of Mt. Olivet, the new Catholic burying place, the sexton has been withdrawn from the old cemetery and there is now no one employed to look after the place. As a consequence the graves are becoming badly overgrown with weeds and grass. People whose relatives are interred there and who will not, at least for a long time, remove them to the new cemetery, desire to form an association for the purpose of keeping the place in good repair. Persons living in all the parishes are interested.
Source: St. Joseph Daily News, 9 Aug 1895, p. 7
WILL KEEP IN SHAPE
Calvary Cemetery Will Be Looked After
It Has Been Sadly Neglected of Late Owing to the Opening of Mt. Olivet, but Steps Were Taken at a Meeting Held Last Night to Have It Cared For in the Future -- Permanent Organization Effected.
The moving of the Catholic cemetery from Calvary to Mount Olivet and the consequent neglect of Calvary cemetery by the church has caused some commotion among those whose dead are buried in the old cemetery and who do not feel like removing the remains to the new.
As a result there was a meeting of those interested in Calvary cemetery held at Irish-American hall last night that was attended by about 100 men and women whose dead are buried in Calvary and who feel that the cemetery should be kept up in proper shape. It seems that when the new cemetery was laid out and ready for use the sale of lots in the old cemetery was stopped. To this there was no objection, as it gave those purchasing new lots a chance to improve them, but when the old cemetery was neglected and the fences allowed to go to decay those who for forty years past have buried their dead in old Cavalry [sic] and who own lots there decided to take some steps to see that the cemetery was not left to go to ruin.
The meeting last night was for this purpose and after the object had been stated, a permanent organization was effected by the election of the following officers: President, Joseph McInnerny; secretary, Chris L. Rutt; treasurer, Dennis Curtin.
A committee to draft a constitution and by-laws of a cemetery association was appointed, consisting of the following:
Bernard Patton of the Cathedral parish, Egid Wagner of Immaculate Conception parish, M. M. Toohey of St. Mary's parish, James O'Reilly of Holy Rosary parish, Joseph Massard of St. Francis Xavier's parish, Anton Fortik of the Polish parish, and Peter Bowen of St. Patrick's parish.
It was decided that all lot owners are to pay their proportion for keeping the cemetery in good repair and the meeting adjourned until next Saturday night when the report of the committee will be received. All those interested in the cemetery are requested to attend that meeting.
Source: St. Joseph Herald, 11 Aug 1895, p. 3
Where Sleep the Dead
. . .
There are other beautiful cities of the dead in and around St. Joseph, perhaps the most historic of which is Calvary cemetery, located at the foot of Twelfth street. It is there that Joseph Robidoux, the founder of St. Joseph, is buried. He died in the city which he had built, May 27, 1868, at the age of eighty-five years. Having been a devout Catholic all his life he was buried at Calvary cemetery. There was a public funeral. Business houses were closed and all business was suspended for the day, while the people generally participated in the last tribute to the founder of their city. Robidoux was comparatively poor when he died, having lost much of his property by unfortunate speculation. His grave is marked by no monument, and a suggestion has been made that a fitting memorial should be erected for him by the people of the metropolis for which he laid the foundations in the days when the country hereabout was the home of the Indians.
Calvary cemetery is now in disuse, the Catholics having established a more beautiful and imposing city of the dead on Lover's Lane, north of the city. This cemetery is known as Mount Olivet, and it promises some day to outrank Mount Mora in beauty and arrangement. A substantial stone chapel marks the entrance, and the drives and walks are laid out in gravel and splendidly kept.
Source: St. Joseph Daily News, 16 Aug 1902, p. 3