The Plano City Council held its final meeting of 2019 Tuesday in quick fashion. On the consent agenda was the approval of funds to rehabilitate two historic cemeteries in the city that were damaged when a tornado swept through Plano in October.
The Young and Rowlett Creek cemeteries both took on extensive damage in the high winds, resulting in the $32,727 request for repairs from the Plano Conservancy for Historic Preservation Inc., which was approved by council.
According to the request memo, damage includes headstones, trees and fencing in the cemeteries. At Young Cemetery, the funding includes tree and limb removal, repair to a
damaged iron fence, and repair of one damaged headstone. Tree removal is necessary to secure the safety of the site and prevent damage to additional headstones, the memo states. Tree removal estimates range from $5,500 to $12,960 with a $400 estimate for repair and restoration of a broken headstone.
Rowlett Creek Cemetery saw more damage to headstones, 23 of which require restoration from wind damage. Uprooted trees, debris and broken limbs also need to be removed from the site, in addition to fence repair. Cost estimates range from $6,650 to $12,448.75 for tree removal and $9,465.75 for headstone restoration, the memo states.
Both cemeteries are registered Texas Historical Landmarks. Young Cemetery on Independence Parkway was named for Samuel and Patience Cornell Young, whose family settled in Collin County in 1842 and founded a school on their property. The cemetery was established in 1847 after the death of Patience, whose burial is known as the second oldest gravesite in Plano, according to the memo. There are 51 known graves in the cemetery, including the grave of Thomas Finley, a War of 1812 veteran.
Rowlett Creek Cemetery was established in 1862 with the grave of pioneer Alfred Harrington near Custer Road and SH 121.