Next time you are driving by Ikea, slow down and take a moment to realize that you have just passed a unique heritage cemetery. Better yet, park your car in the lot near Sears Home and wander around to the front of the cemetery where you will find a new plaque. The Hamilton Chapter of the United Empire Loyalists had the unveiling of this plaque, Sunday, November 15th.
The new plaque will let people know of the hardworking United Empire Loyalists, who are buried here. Established in 1848, the Union Burying Grounds was founded by ten pioneer families who were members of the Methodist Union. The families holding plots here were major contributors to the early growth, prosperity, and well-being of Nelson and the Village of Wellington Square: Baxter, Crosby, Cummins, Davis, Fisher, Gage, Galloway, Ghent, Kerns and Pearl. I find it impressive that almost 150 years later, the descendants of its founders continue to manage and maintain this historic burial place. The fine brick wall was built by Jabez Bent in 1888 - sadly it is in much need of restoration. The wrought iron gates and original name plaque also date from 1888. The grave markers are invaluable historic records and also merit preservation. This cemetery feels especially unique given it's setting of urban development.
*photo courtesy of The Burlington Historical Society