Friday, June 02, 2006

Indigent/smallpox victims buried in little cemetery

QUESTION: What is the story behind the Pauper’s Cemetery on the west side of 21st Street when you are heading toward Bear Creek Park?
Susan and Paul

ANSWER: It was the burial site for smallpox victims who were patients in what was called Pest House, a smallpox hospital run by the county from the early 1900s through the 1920s. The Pest House and the county’s Poor Farm occupied the southeast corner of Rio Grande and 21st streets, where the county parks headquarters is today. The Poor Farm operated into the 1970s as a home for the indigent, became a temporary shelter until it closed in 1984 and was demolished.
Some early-1900s Poor Farm residents are also buried in the little cemetery, and others are in Evergreen Cemetery.


Post a Comment

<< Home