Saturday, May 24, 2014

Cemetery Log Date: May 24, 2014

Historic community cemetery that hasn't changed much over the last century and a half.

Fort Christmas Cemetery has served the tiny community (only about 1,200 folks call this town home) of Fort Christmas, Florida since 1867.  The town is named after a fort constructed nearby during the Second Seminole War in 1837 on Christmas Day.  The fort no longer stands, but just down the road from the cemetery the Fort Christmas Historical Park boasts, among many other great attractions, a reconstruction of the original fort.  Inside the fort a museum interpreting the era of the Seminole Wars and early settler history is open most days of the week and well worth the visit.  The Fort Christmas Cemetery is still in use by the community and lovingly cared for.  Many notable pioneers and their families are buried here as is the sculptor Hughlette "Tex" Wheeler.  Tex Wheeler was a local of Christmas and is known for many notable works, including depictions of the racehorse Seabiscuit and a well-known sculpture of Will Rogers. Though much of Orange County went through a period of heavy urbanization after WWII and especially with the coming of Disney, Fort Christmas has not grown much beyond a small hamlet situated in the pinewoods and cattle pastures of this area in Florida.
The community keeps a close watch on the cemetery.

Sons of Confederate Veterans Camp 2120 holds an annual Confederate Memorial Day tribute here.

Touching headstone of a young woman, front...

and on the back, a bit of her poetry.
True fan.

Well-cared for historic Fort Christmas Cemetery

Who: Christmas Cemetery Association, Inc. manages the cemetery.
What:  Late 19th century pioneer to present rural cemetery.
Where: 23644 Christmas Cemetery Road, Christmas, 32709
When:  Dawn to Dusk

  • Early pioneer cemetery still in use.
  • Tex Wheeler's final resting place.
  • Excellent array of markers from late 19th century to present.
  • Nearby Fort Christmas Historical Park.
  • Very well cared for.
Tex Wheeler statue of Will Rogers

Text and images: Kevin Gidusko
Except pic of Wheeler's Will Rogers, found here.

2014 #CaDiM posts

2013 #CaDiM posts
IntroMay 1: NationalMay 2: OakdaleMay 3: Murphy's CreekMay 4: Mt. OliveMay 5: Bosque BelloMay 6: Old CityMay 7: EspanolaMay 8: TolomatoMay 9: PacettiMay 10: West ViewMay 11: Magnolia Springs,  May 12: St. Peter'sMay 13: Gravely HillMay 14: Pilgrim's RestMay 15: God's Little AcreMay 16: Dummet's GraveMay 17: No NameMay 18: St. MonicaMay 19: St. Joseph'sMay 20:  Old St. Joseph's (Duval)May 21: SampsonMay 22: Fernandez ReserveMay 23: St. AmbroseMay 24: Sons of IsraelMay 25: SanksvilleMay 26: HuguenotMay 27: Nombre de DiosMay 28: BeresfordMay 29: JonesMay 30: San Sebastian/PinehurstMay 31: Oaklynn

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