Jackson - Wilson - Dow Park, Deer Park, TX
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member jhuoni
N 29° 41.207 W 095° 07.144
15R E 294958 N 3285957
Quick Description: A single headstone in Dow Park marks the (relocated) final resting place of a brother and a sister who died in 1834.
Location: Texas, United States
Date Posted: 8/13/2019 2:28:36 PM
Waymark Code: WM1147Y
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Blue Man
Views: 0

Long Description:
To the memory of
Mary W. Jackson.
died July 24, 1834:
Aged 33 years.

William Wilson.
died Oct. 7., 1834:
Age 25 years

Both of Boston U.S..A.

From the Texas Historical Commission Atlas
Jackson Wilson Cemetery
Atlas Number 7201014903

The graves were located inside the Shell Refinery Tank Farm which used to be the Wilson property. In 1976 the gravestone was moved to Dow Park

From The Deer Park Community
1830s Headstone Reunited With Grave At Dow Park
Written by Bobby Vasquez. Posted in Community
November 10, 2016

The headstone marking the final resting place of two adult siblings who died in 1834 was reunited with their grave Wednesday. The headstone and grave of Mary W. Jackson and William Wilson is thought to be the oldest known relic in Deer Park. The headstone sat above the grave for 30 years before the stone was placed in Dow Park.

Almost 10 years after it was relocated to Heritage Park without council’s knowledge, the headstone marking the grave of Mary W. Jackson and William Wilson was reunited with the siblings’ remains Wednesday afternoon.

Councilwoman Sherry Garrison, who heads the city’s Historical Committee, watched as Texas Cemetery Restoration moved the stone from Heritage Park and reset it at the siblings’ grave at Dow Park.

“I’m very, very happy. It’s back home where it should be,” she said as the finishing touches were placed on the setting.

The stone tablet is thought to be the oldest marked headstone in Harris County, predating the Battle of San Jacinto by two years. The headstone reads: "To the memory of Mary W. Jackson died July 25, 1834 aged 33 years And William Wilson died Oct. 7, 1834, aged 25 years. Both of Boston U.S.A."

Garrison said Jackson was visiting her brother William who lived on the present-day Shell Deer Park property. Jackson died of some illness in the summer of 1834, followed by Wilson that fall. The pair have no known relatives.

Last month, Garrison informed a surprised council the stone was moved while the casket was left behind in Dow Park without its knowledge in either 2007 or 2008. She asked for and received council’s blessing to allow the Historical Committee to reunite the headstone and the casket.

On Wednesday, that wish came true. The journey back to a quiet spot beneath two pine trees on Dow Park’s western edge actually began in 1928 when surveyors discovered a headstone broken into four pieces on the recently purchased Shell Refinery property.

"Shell put the headstone back together and treated it as a grave site," Garrison said. A large piece of concrete was attached to the original headstone to help piece it together.

For nearly a century, the grave was nestled beneath a single grave stone beneath a sweetgum tree on a hill on the site of the of San Jacinto Battlefield, Garrison said, citing newspaper reports from 1928.

"For the next 49 years, the grave site remained with Shell. As Shell grew, there was a need to meet water quality regulations and they had to build a water basin where the grave site was," she said.

In 1976, Shell contacted the county and state historical commission as well as the city of Deer Park. After fruitless attempts to locate relatives of Jackson and Wilson, Shell received permission to move the grave site to Dow Park.

On March 8, 1977, the area was excavated to approximately six feet where a small cement casket was removed from the site, along with the headstone and relocated to Dow Park. Garrison said Earthman Funeral Home oversaw the disinterment and re-interment of the grave.

Rusty Brenner of Texas Cemetery Restoration said the move was not difficult but setting the headstone was tricky because it the dimensions are not even. He said it was an honor to reunite the buried casket with its grave marker.

“Historical and old graves get moved for whatever reason, but in this case we knew where the grave was and where the headstone should be,” he said. “In Texas, we’re proud of our history. This could be the last piece information of someone who lived and died. It appears that these were just two regular people who raised families and lived through the hard times and today we are living on what they built.”

Garrison said she believes the Dow Park grave is eligible for a historical marker from the State of Texas and the Historical Commission is working to see that happen.

In the meantime, the Historical Committee would like to place a fence around the site. Garrison said she hopes to bring city council to see the finished work at an upcoming council meeting.
First Name: Not listed

Last Name: Not listed

Born: Not listed

Died: Not listed

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