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New marker at Maple Park Cemetery tells the site's story and who is buried there

 New historical marker at Maple Park Cemetery erected by Daughters of the Revolution, Rachel Donelson Chapter (photo taken October 9, 2023)
Michele Skalicky
New historical marker at Maple Park Cemetery erected by Daughters of the Revolution, Rachel Donelson Chapter (photo taken October 9, 2023)

The marker was installed by the Rachel Donelson Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution.

A new marker at Maple Park Cemetery in central Springfield tells the story of the historic site and who is buried there.

 A band performs before a ceremony to unveil an historic marker at Maple Park Cemetery in Springfield, MO (photo taken October 8, 2023)
Michele Skalicky
A band performs before a ceremony to unveil an historic marker at Maple Park Cemetery in Springfield, MO (photo taken October 8, 2023)

The marker was unveiled during a ceremony Sunday. Members of the Republic Community Band played in the cemetery’s gazebo before the event began.

Pat Haas, regent for the Rachel Donelson Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, said her organization was behind the effort to have the marker erected. They had to go through a process of approval from their national office to prove that everything on the marker was accurate, according to Haas.

She said Maple Park Cemetery has a lot of history lessons to teach.

"It's a very interesting history of early Springfield and some of the early pioneers," she said, "and why it was formed and who developed it and the land that it originally belonged to and what it was used in past history before it became a cemetery. And, so, a lot of those early pioneers of Springfield are buried here."

 A ceremony is about to start to unveil an historic marker at Maple Park Cemetery in Springfield, MO (photo taken October 8, 2023)
Michele Skalicky
A ceremony is about to start to unveil an historic marker at Maple Park Cemetery in Springfield, MO (photo taken October 8, 2023)

The new sign tells visitors who those are – folks like Davis Tutt who was killed by Wild Bill Hickok during a shootout on Park Central Square in 1865 and his half-brother Lewis Tutt – the first Black police officer in Springfield.

Haas said DAR has three goals: Historic preservation, education and patriotism. They’ve worked with Maple Park Cemetery for years to place wreaths on veterans’ graves and host a ceremony as part of Wreaths Across America. The new sign, she said, meets the goals of both historical preservation and education.

Copyright 2023 KSMU. To see more, visit KSMU.

Michele Skalicky