Lenexa Cemetery

About this Cemetery

Lenexa Cemetery was officially established in 1872 for use as a city cemetery. The Lenexa Cemetery Association was incorporated at that time to provide the management and maintenance of the cemetery. The Association is made up of volunteers and is managed by a Board of Directors. The cemetery is open to those outside Lenexa.

Further study reveals that the cemetery was in use at least 10 years prior to the 1872 legal establishment. The oldest legible death date is inscribed on a sandstone obelisk to memorialize an early Johnson County pioneer, who's early death left a young wife to forge her own way. Over thirty years later, she joined her husband to rest for eternity.

Father // Frederick Williamson // Died // Aug. 30, 1862. // Aged // 30 Yrs. and 5 Mos. // There is an end to all // things.

Mother // Eliza Jane // Wife of // Fredrick // Williamson // Died // Dec. 24, 1893. // Aged // 58 Yrs 11 Mos 28 Dys // Epitaph illegible

The death dates, when mapped, provide a picture of the growth of the cemetery since its beginning. The cemetery grew at an increasing sharper rate through the 1900s and appears to have peaked in the 1900s. This was followed by a small decline and then the cemetery plateaued from the 1920s through the 1980s. Finally, the 1990s show a 15% increase, or average of one person per year, over prior decades.

Approximately 53% of the cemetery population sample is male, with 43% female, and that ratio remained fairly steady throughout the decades.

When looking at the growth of the cemetery by age group we see the evidence of a high child mortality rate and of a young population, both common to early pioneer life. As time went on, child mortality rates dropped and life spans increased greatly. Virtually absent before the 1890s, people 70-89 years of age make up 43% of the entire population of the cemetery. The cemetery boasts two possible centurians:

Yocum, Clara Belle; b. 1853; d. 1953;
Oehninger, Frieda; b. 1878; d. 1979;

The most popular surnames in the cemetery represent large families that spanned generations and some have area street that bear their name:

   Moody (21)
   Legler (18)
   Haskin (17)
   Goode (16)
   Stevens (16)
   Bradshaw (14)
   Busch (14)
   Allen (13)
   Wedd (13)
   Breyfogle (12)
   Boehm (11)

Gender by decade chart Age Groups by Decade chart Age Group Ratio chart