The largest non-sectarian burial place in Yonkers, Oakland Cemetery traces its origins to 1866 when the Yonkers Cemetery Association was organized. This association established a large burial ground on the south side of Saint John's Cemetery. The Yonkers Cemetery Association struggled financially during its early years, and was reorganized as Oakland Cemetery in 1882. The cemetery, which now comprises ** acres, is the final resting place of many of Yonkers' most notable residents, including ****.
Backstory and Context
Stretching across 51 acres, Oakland Cemetery is now the final resting place of hundreds of Yonkers residents, including some of the earliest settlers in the area. The cemetery began in approximately 1783 as St. John's Burial Ground. At the time, it was part of St. John's Parish and was established as a burial ground for Revolutionary War soldiers.
In time, the old cemetery became full, and in 1866, more land was added to form Oakland Cemetery. The first burial in the newly incorporated cemetery was on September 2, 1867. In the same year, the large iron gates at the main entrance were added, and in 1871, plans were developed for an overseer's house and a chapel. Those buildings can be seen to the left of the primary entrance.
In 1927, the cemetery sold 14 acres of land to Westchester County during the construction of the Saw Mill River Parkway. The size of the cemetery--51 acres--has not changed since that time. The cemetery is divided roughly in half; the older part, St. John's Burial Ground, occupies one half and the newer part occupies the other half.
History. Oakland Cemetery. Accessed January 03, 2018. http://www.oaklandcemeteryny.com/History.html.