News Column

A not-so-spooky cemetery tour

May 29, 2014

By Janet Van Vleet, Abilene Reporter-News, Texas



May 29--Do you know how many people are buried at the Abilene Municipal Cemetery?

Just how much do you know about that cemetery?

Probably not as much as local historian and storyteller Jay Moore.

Moore, who teaches history at Abilene High School, is known for his "History in Plain Sight" documentary series about Abilene and the surrounding area.

As part of the "Home on the Range: Where the Prairie Meets the Plains in Central West Texas" exhibit at The Grace Museum, Moore will share his knowledge of the Abilene cemetery, which dates to 1881.

"It's a tour of the old city cemetery, without going out there," Moore said of "Grace Tales & Tombstones," adding that he hopes people will go out there on their own. "I think it's a lot more fun discovering it yourself. It's something people can go and do."

The folks buried out there aren't particularly famous, but many have close connections to famous names. The father of one of the biggest movie stars rests there, as does a playmate of King George V, and the wife of a Texas governor.

"When Abilene got started, the cemetery was right at the city limits," Moore said. "Now it's in the middle of town."

Moore's thirst for history may have come from a friend who loved to tell history stories or maybe from his paternal grandfather.

"He was forever driving by a place and telling stories," Moore said.

Sharing the history of Abilene is a way to preserve it.

"You know your family history and American history, but few know their local history," he said.

As for how many people rest at the old cemetery? You'll have to come and learn for yourself.

___

(c)2014 the Abilene Reporter-News (Abilene, Texas)

Visit the Abilene Reporter-News (Abilene, Texas) at www.reporternews.com

Distributed by MCT Information Services


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Source: Abilene Reporter-News (TX)


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