- Did you know that Charlotte County’s four historical cemeteries date back, at least, to the 1880’s?
- Did you know that some of the people who found their final resting places in these cemeteries include Punta Gorda’s first pioneers and founding fathers, one of Florida’s first equal opportunity employers, those who helped build the Florida Southern Railroad and who constructed the first homes and businesses in the area?
- Did you know that there are over 400 Veterans of wars, ranging from the Civil War to the Vietnam War, buried in these cemeteries?
If you would like to be part of helping protect this very rich part of Charlotte County’s history you can adopt all or part of one of our historical cemeteries.
Hickory Bluff Cemetery
Under the shade of large oak trees you will find three visible gravesites here but there are many more unmarked graves within the fenced area. Stories are told that John and Easter Lowman had 15 children but only 5 were known to reach maturity. It is not known how many of their children are buried here with them, but we do know that there are family members and close friends of John and Easter who are also buried here. This small parcel of land is located in the Charlotte Harbor area at 4051 Rowland Ave., Punta Gorda, FL 33980.
Adopted by the Hickory Bluff Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution
Southland Trail Cemetery
This little cemetery was discovered in a very peaceful wooded area surrounded by a neighborhood. As you walk the marked pathways or rest on the benches here you will notice depressions in the ground, lined up row-by-row, all about the same size. No-one knows for certain who is buried here but it is thought that the deaths of these people may have been cloaked in misery, malnutrition, disease or punishment. The deceased were either placed in unmarked graves or perhaps with wooden markers that deteriorated long ago. Southland Trail is located in Northwest Port Charlotte at 14516 Mc Clellan Avenue, Port Charlotte, FL 33953.
Adopted by TJ’s CDS
Indian Spring Cemetery
Platted in the 1880’s, this 40+ acre site holds the remains of Punta Gorda’s founding fathers. In fact, the signing of Punta Gorda’s incorporation was conducted at the billiards hall owned by Thomas Hector (1838-1899) who also served as the first City Clerk. Early pioneers quickly realized they needed a place to bury deceased criminals, poor, unidentified & unclaimed bodies so they set aside a small section historically known as a “Potter’s Field.” Secretly, loved ones placed small markers or other items on the graves of those in Potter’s Field in spite of their reputation. Many of these items are historical artifacts and you and your group can help maintain and preserve local history through the Adopt-A-Cemetery Program. Indian Spring Cemetery is located at 5400 Indian Springs Road, Punta Gorda, FL 33950.
Lieutenant Carl Bailey Cemetery
This 5+ acre cemetery has its own beauty within. Buried here you will see the graves of Tony, Smiley, Shorty, and Dan buried alongside at least three Deacons, four Reverends, celebrated soldiers and more recently, Tommy Fulton, a 1973 Olympian. Beautification projects will be an important part of the Adopt-A-Cemetery Program at this location. For groups with a “green thumb,” this cemetery is for you, located just off of US 17 in the Cleveland area. The entrance to the cemetery is on Scott Avenue, Punta Gorda, FL 33982.
Adopted by the Charlotte Bay Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution
Adopting a cemetery, or a part of a cemetery, is as easy as organizing a group of volunteers from your club, association, school or church, to pick up litter and debris and beautify certain areas of the cemetery at least four times per year. Charlotte County will recognize your group by installing a sign at the location and sincerely appreciates your dedication to protecting history and the environment.
After your group signs their contract with KCB, you will be provided safety equipment and supplies and then we will schedule an orientation with Public Works prior to launching your cleanup activities.
Cemetery Resource Protection Workshops will be offered through the Florida Public Archeology Network. CRPT training is not required however it will give your group a deeper understanding of cemetery care. All adoption groups that complete this training will have a badge placed next to their name on the KCB page.
We hope that you will join our 4,000 volunteers in participating in this new and exciting adoption program!