Tag Archives: graveyard

Top Instagram shots from 2013 – #3

3. The cemetery at Travers, Alberta (2010)


This photo was taken in early August 2010 on the final leg of that year’s Forgotten Alberta Road Trip. The visit to Travers Cemetery was a pilgrimage of sorts for me, as four generations of my family have been laid to rest here over the span of a century. Forest fires in British Columbia were just beginning to cast an acrid haze over the countryside, something that is a little more apparent in the image below. This photo was also taken during the 2010 visit to Travers from a vantage point overlooking crop land and farms to the northwest.

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Taylor Cemetery: “Consecrated, set apart, and dedicated forever.”

On October 1, 2013, I was honoured to be part of a dedication ceremony at Taylor Cemetery, located about five miles west of Bow City (which I have written about here and here). A ceremony was performed by Rev. Gordon Cranch of Vulcan; alongside a plinth and bronze plaque that had been installed previously by Vulcan County to commemorate this nearly forgotten pioneer graveyard.

Continue reading Taylor Cemetery: “Consecrated, set apart, and dedicated forever.”

Who are the forgotten dead of Vulcan County?

Whose remains are buried here?

During the decade after 1916, settlers fled the drought-ridden plains of southeastern Alberta en masse. As David C. Jones outlines in his book, We’ll all be buried down here- The Prairie Drybelt Disaster of 1917-1926, homesteaders often alighted with few possessions, many carrying only “the shirts on their backs”.

In some instances settlers were forced to part with something more dear, the remains of loved ones who had passed on, left behind in lonely, sometimes forgotten, prairie graveyards.

“We’ll all be buried down here in this dry belt, if we wait for the government to get us out,” Jones quotes one settler, who expressed his desire to “Quit the Dry Belt” in no uncertain terms:. “And parts of it are desperately desolate places to be buried in.

One such desperately desolate place was Taylor Cemetery, located in Vulcan County:

Along an unremarkable stretch of road, about seventeen miles northeast of the village of Lomond, lie the forgotten dead of Vulcan County.

On a wind-whipped knoll, just to the north of Secondary Highway 539, a lonely pioneer graveyard endures, as it has for almost a century. Within rest the remains of a forgotten few, the only legacy left by a handful of pioneer families who were driven from these drought-stricken plains after 1916. Today this little cemetery on the prairie holds a mystery, the identities of those laid to rest, and the number of individuals interred here, having been lost over time.

Continue reading Who are the forgotten dead of Vulcan County?