St Mary's Cemetery


St Mary's Cemetery
In 1830 Etienne (Stephen) and Mary Rose arrived in Detroit from Montreal. They settled with their children near here. Rose and his sons supported the family by cutting and selling wood at fifty cents a cord. In 1840 the Roses bought about thirty-seven acres of land from the government. On November 30, 1849, they deeded some of the land to the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Detroit to build a church and cemetery. Early church histories state that the cemetery's earliest burials were the remains of some of the community's earliest settlers, who had been buried along Anchor Bay but had to be relocated to the cemetery's southeast corner due to rising water levels. The burial ground became the resting place for many of Ira Township's earliest immigrant residents from Switzerland, Canada, France, Germany, Belgium, Ireland, England and the Netherlands.
 
 
Side 2
Approximately 1,850 people have been buried in St. Mary's Cemetery. Most were members of the nearby Catholic Church. Among them were twelve Civil War veterans, including Stephen Rose, son of Etienne and Mary Rose who donated this land. In 1872 a world-wide smallpox epidemic reached Ira Township and took the lives of twenty-nine people. Almost half of them were buried here. Though some of this cemetery's graves are unmarked, many have markers made of concrete, marble, granite, limestone and sculpted iron. St. Mary's Cemetery and the associated nearby parish church were renamed Immaculate Conception in the early twentieth century. In 1911 the church reaffirmed its commitment to this cemetery, declaring "Make it God's acre, a sacred dormitory where His weary children sleep til the day of the Resurrection."

Registered Site L2295
Erected 2017

Location: 6890 Church Rd
Fairhaven, Saint Clair County


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