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Carnahan Cemetery

November 12, 2010


The entrance gate into Carnahan Cemetery

The site I refer to as the Carnahan Cemetery is located adjacent to the Cleveland Cemetery on Lena Flatwoods Road.  I use the word “adjacent” in the most literal way possible.  They are essentially one cemetery divided into two parts by a chain link fence.  This fence has no gate or entry point allowing access from one cemetery to the other.  In order to enter Carnahan Cemetery, you have to walk out the front gate of Cleveland Cemetery and walk around to the side in order to reach the gate.

I have encountered this in at least two other places.  Two cemeteries in Campti–one Catholic, the other community-owned and African-American– are separated by a barbed wire fence.  (I always thought barbed wire was a bit extreme)  In Marthaville, a fence surrounds the Marthaville Cemetery and there is no way to reach the much smaller African-American burial space without exiting the cemetery and walking all the way around to the back.

Cleveland is not entirely without vault graves, but the practice is much more common at Carnahan.  I believe it is the dominant grave type here.

Examples of vault type graves on the right

When writing about Harmony Baptist Cemetery I mentioned that there were what could have been three versions of the same name.  There is a similar situation at Carnahan.





Though not as common as in Cleveland, there is a bit of chain link sectioning in Carnahan.


Fenced in vaults


There are several graves with American flags, but none with as many as this one:


Several American flags surround a grave. A twelfth flag is on the ground to the left


The photos I take are meant to show the things that stand out to me in some way.  This grave shows what looks to be a homemade marker on top of a vault.  It is made of tiles similar to what one might find in a kitchen or bathroom.


Tiles form this marker on top of a vault


I am often reminded that not everything that marks a grave is a formal headstone, vault, monument or other sort of carved structure.  It doesn’t have to be fancy to get the job done.  Sometimes a simple rock can serve this purpose.


Rocks often serve in place of more formal or elaborate markers


See more photos of this cemetery on my flickr page.


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