Saturday, April 1, 2017

This Month in Rochester History

Half a century ago, Avon Township held its annual meeting and considered its options for a new cemetery.  Rochester had just become a city two months earlier, in February 1967.  Cityhood for Rochester meant that Mount Avon Cemetery, which lay within the former village - now city - boundaries, passed from the administration of Avon Township to the new city government.

Avon Township had other cemetery property, most notably the Paint Creek Cemetery on Romeo Road.   There was still some burial space available there, but the cemetery was small and could not serve the township into the future.  Fortunately, in 1956, Sarah Van Hoosen Jones had donated approximately 16 acres of land on East Tienken Road to the township specifically for use as a cemetery.

The township approved $15,000 to grade the Tienken Road property and build roads within the new cemetery.  Clerk Thelma Spencer promised taxpayers that the cemetery's business model would be designed to be self-sustaining.  The new Van Hoosen Jones-Stoney Creek Cemetery was laid out with 11,200 two-space burial plots, a cremation section, and a chapel.

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