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The Blackburn Chapel Cemetery is located 4 miles west of Tecumseh, Ok on State Highway #9; 5 miles north on NS-336 (Bethel Road); .4 mile east on EW-116 (Lake Road). Or, 4.6 miles west of the Kickapoo-Benedict Street intersection in Shawnee, Ok. (Benedict St. becomes EW-114, the Lake Road). (S1/2 of NW1/2 of Sec 20-T 10N-R3E).

In 1899, community residents established a church 1/2 mile west and one mile north of the present cemetery, called Valley Grove. In 1900 the church was moved to its present site adjacent the cemetery and named "Blackburn Chapel" for the man who gave the land for the church and cemetery, Mr. Blackburn and 12 charter members built the church with all labor and material provided by residents. The cemetery is located south of the large native rock church, is fenced and well maintained. Gravesites are sold in blocks and only plots in the far southwest corner of the area are sold by single grave space. A path divides the family plots every 32 feet. The east driveway is lined by poplar trees and curves west though the cemetery.

The first known burial occurred prior to 1899 when a Mexican child on a wagon train south of the present cemetery died and was buried on the side of the hill. The freight trail from Sacred Heart to Oklahoma City angled through the area about 500 yards south of the present cemetery.

Pottawatomie County Deed Bk. 132 p. 76 reflects that R. H. Farthing and Luella Farthing sold for $75 to S. T. Rankin, E. A. Boettler and I. B. Ferris, Trustees of Blackburn Chapel Baptist Church on July 12, 1930 a parcel in the NE corner of the NW 1/4 of Sec 20-T 10N-R3E, lying immediately west of and adjacent to property of Blackburn Chapel Baptist Church, the S1/2 of same for a pastor's home or other purposes... A copy of the original land conveyance, provided by Rev. Larry Sparks, pastor of Blackburn Chapel Baptist Church, reflects that on September 24, 1903, C. C. Blackburn and his wife, N. J. Blackburn, sold for the sum of $1.00 to Thomas Toofle, Jasper Everett, and C.C. Blackburn, Trustees of the Valley Grove Baptist Church and their successors , two acres, in the NE corner of NW 1/4 of Sec 20-T 10N-R3E. (Pott. Co Deed Bk. 27 p 301).

CC (Christopher Colunbus) was my gr-gr-grandfather!
submitted by Peggy Haynie phaynie@sonetcom.com