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The present discussion regarding the use of flag markers in cemeteries brings up a question regarding the old cemetery located approximately where St. John's Lutheran church now stands. The only information available is contained in Holland's Sterling and Rock Falls directory of 1875-6 which says:
"The Old Cemetery of Sterling which is some 30 years old contains about two acres and has its entrance at the east send of Locust street, William Goshen is the sexton".
According to the same book, the Sterling Cemetery association was organized Feb. 16, 1865. The Odd Fellows cemetery was organized in 1870 and the Mennonite cemetery is 1869?(bad copy). It has always been our idea that the Odd Fellows controlled the cemetery, and that the Sterling cemetery was a small offshoot of the Odd Fellows burying ground.
However according to this ancient directory, the Sterling Cemetery association contains 50 acres and that of the Odd Fellows only two acres. One is prone to believe that somewhere back in the distant ages, the Odd Fellows must have taken over the larger burying grounds.
Perhaps our friend, Earl Treat, custodian of the cemetery, can furnish the information. And he, possibly can also furnish the information regarding the old cemetery at the east end of Locust street. Mr. Treat is familiar with graveyard history and has most of the records. Before the question loses interest, we trust he will furnish the details - if he has them. We would also like to known who originated the "Riverside?". [Sterling Daily Gazette Tuesday 29 July 1947]
by Genealogy Trails