Oakwood is 167 years old, this month!

Actual page from 1852

Actual page from 1852

NIAGARA FALLS, NY (Oakwood Cemetery) - February 9, 1852 a meeting of subscribers to a new cemetery near Niagara Falls, NY was held to form a corporation.  The meeting held at the St. Lawrence Hotel was attended by some of Niagara's most prominent citizens.  Parkhurst Whitney (owner of the Cataract House and father of the "Three Sisters" as in Three Sister's Islands) was elected President.  J. F. Trott, (who later had the Vocational School named after him), was elected Secretary.  Peter A. Porter was also in attendance.  (He eventually became Colonel Porter and was shot and killed while leading his men in the battle at Cold Harbor during the Civil War).  

The men decided to take a vote on what they should name the new cemetery.  Some of the suggestions were: Oakwood, Oakgrove, Oakfield, Oakdale, Oakland, Oakvale, Hopefield, Hoperest, Hopes' Rest, Hope Wood, Woodfield, Woodlawn, and Greenwoods.  The vote was 20 for Oakwood and 1 for Oakgrove.  So the name was adopted. Oddly enough, there is only Oak Tree left in Oakwood, and we have been advised that Oaks don’t “play well with others” and may not be the best fit for the grounds.

Notable People Recognition Ceremony

NIAGARA FALLS, NY (Oakwood Cemetery) -  Oakwood Cemetery added 3 the names of 3 permanent residents to our list of Notable People.  Notable People are then added to our cemetery map as a person (or persons) of special significance to the culture or history of Niagara Falls.  Photos and a small video of the event can be found here.

The 2017 Class includes Orrin E. Dunlap was a photographer and managing editor of the Niagara Falls Gazette from 1890 - 1895.  He chronicled his life and times and in the process has given us some of the most iconic photos and stories of Niagara's Daredevils and historical events.  His collection is now housed at the Niagara Falls Public Library and portions can be found by clicking the link.

Our second member is Jesse Ware a Revolutionary War soldier who had answered the call at Lexington.  Mr. Ware came to the Village of Manchester, (later Niagara Falls) in 1800. He was caretaker of 5,000 acres of land here and lived in a house that was built up against the Old Stone Chimney, now located on New York State Power Authority Land.

The final members of this year's class are members of a family whose lives were cut short in a horrific fire.  In fact, it was a the worst fire in Niagara Falls history.  17 people lost their lives on Allen Avenue in the morning of November 16, 1957.  27 year old, Mary Evella Ewing and 8 of her children perished in the fire along with 9 of her neighbors.  The fire leaves an indelible mark on Niagara Falls to this day.   The sad result of the fire was published in the Niagara Falls Gazette on November 20, 1957 as the 9 caskets were lined up in Oakwood in preparation for burial.