The History of Oak Park Cemetery Lincoln County Oklahoma History © Evelyn Park and Laura Good
The History of Oak Park CemeteryOak Park Cemetery, owned by the city of Chandler, is located on a beautiful hill at the west edge of the city. Large native oak trees shade the area where for nearly one hundred years families, city leaders, and war veterans from every war since and including the Civil War have been interred. One former Governor of Oklahoma, J. B. A. Robertson, who served from 1919 to 1923, is buried here. Another famous man, Marshall William "Bill" Tilghman, who helped bring law and order to this territory and state, rests here also. As you enter the cemetery through a gate flanked on each side by stone gateposts erected in 1934 by the Round Table Club, there is an immediate feeling of quiet, peace and reverence. Near the northeast corner, a circle drive surrounds a grassy area with large cedar trees outlining its perimeter. In the center stands a flagpole where the flag is flown on appropriate occasions and where a service is conducted each year on Memorial Day. This site was used as a burial ground as early as 1892. The oldest tombstone inscription is that of Kate Hinchey who died June 28 1892. The first quarter section of land for the cemetery was homesteaded by Charles Baird. It was briefly owned by Menzella Tanksley who sold it to James M. Gillian on November 4 1897. By the time the twenty five acre cemetery tract was sold on March 29 1900 to J. J. Hopping and L. C. Parmenter, more than 23 people had already been buried there. Mr. Hopping and Mr. Parmenter sold it the next year to Perry F. Sennett and the Chandler Furniture Company. In 1904, the furniture company sold their interest to J. J. Hendon. Mr. Sennett owned a monument works and it is thought Mr. Hanlon worked for him. Furniture stores at that time often sold caskets and sometimes hired undertakers, so it seems likely Oak Park Cemetery was organized during that time. Lots were platted and one hundred and sixteen lots had already been sold before the city of Chandler purchased it on December 5 1906. An additional 9.41 acres were purchased on March 5 1950 adjoining the cemetery on the south in order to provide more space when the need arises. The cemetery founders chose well when they decided on this beautiful location.
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