Pleasant Ridge Cemetery, July 2005

About this Cemetery

Update: See 2007 Construction at Cemetery

The land surrounding the Pleasant Ridge Cemetery was first patented by the United States to George Winn as bounty land given to officers and soldiers under an act passed by Congress on 3 Mar 1855. Winn sold this land to R Morgan, who in turn sold to Joseph M Marvin.

Although the official established date of this cemetery is 1900, it is evident the cemetery was in use long before. Currently there are 32 marked and legible interments prior to 1900, and indication of many graves with missing stones. Based on the legible markers remaining today, the first interment was Belle Rodman in 1865.

Analysis of the evidence found in the cemetery strongly suggests this cemetery began as a customary cemetery for an early pioneer community during the time that Marvin owned this land. One of the remaining broken stones is for Annie Bell Marvin, d. 14 Oct 1867, Aged 1 y 3 m 27 d, Daughter of J M and A Marvin.

Interments by Decade

A local reference book entitled "A Brief Historical Sketch of the F. M. Redpath Farm" by Frank Miller Redpath, 1 Jun 1953, Olathe, KS, provides some insights to the earliest settlers of the small community of Pleasant Ridge. According to Mr. Redpath, the first settlers arrived together in a group. The family names listed in the book as first settlers include the Cooks, Orrs, Hutchesons, Hemphills and Marvins. According to the author, Agnes Marvin, wife of Joseph, wrote a letter to her brother Robert N. Redpath that compelled him, his new bride, and 13 other couples to migrate to Kansas and stake the original homestead claims to the land in this area of Johnson County. Redpath also states that Joseph Marvin donated one acre of land for the Pleasant Ridge cemetery when the first of their small community was in need and that "Some seventy-five of the early pioneers were laid to rest here." At the time of this cemetery reading in 2005, there is evidence of 54 gravestones or markers.

Many of the names found in the Redpath article are shown on the 1874 Johnson County atlas to be close neighbors of Marvin, and many of these family names can be found in the Pleasant Ridge cemetery. By analyzing the death date trends of the legible stones, it appears this short-lived community peaked during Marvin's time in the late 1870s and began a slow decline during the 1880s. By the 1890s, it appears the cemetery was no longer in use. Joseph Marvin sold his land surrounding the cemetery to John and David Crozier on 13 Dec 1893. This deed, found in Book 69, pages 120 and 493, contains the first mention of the cemetery in the County deed records.

The cemetery was officially established in 1900, a few years after Crozier purchased the land. This official act of establishment may indicate the cemetery was in an untended state and a cemetery association formed to manage its care. This also marks the beginning of a second small wave of use that continued through 1939, ending with the interment of Sheridan M Smith. Finally, in 1960, Mary O. Everett became the last interment in the Pleasant Ridge Cemetery.

2007 Construction at Cemetery

November 2005 cemetery photo    July 2007 cemetery photo
November 2005    July 2007

In June-July of 2007, the cemetery fence and hedge was removed, and all the surrounding landscape razed for upcoming development. According to sexton, the cemetery will not be moved. Development plans include extending Rosehill Road next to the cemetery and moving the entrance to the cemetery from 135th Street to the new Rosehill Rd.

Construction July 2007
Construction in July 2007

In September of 2007, access to the cemetery by vehicle is blocked. The right west-bound lane of 135th Street is closed as the crew begins to build the Rosehill Road extension on the west side of the cemetery.

Construction Sept 2007
Construction in September 2007