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Texas | Cemeteries

Sabine Pass Cemetery
Sabine Pass, Texas

Sabine Pass Cemetery Texas tombstone  willow detail

Tombstone Detail
TE Photo March 2007

Getting There
To get to Sabine Pass - Direction

At the main intersection, a small park is to your left (look for the old lighthouse lantern and watchroom) and the cemetery is about a quarter of a mile to the right - on the south side of the road.

On the way to the cemetery (also on the south side of the road) you will see the granite marker erected by the Texas Division of the United Daughters of the Confederacy to commemorate Dick Dowling's lopsided defeat of the invading Union gunships in 1863.
Sabin Pass Cemetery Historical Marker, Texas
Sabine Pass Cemetery Historical Marker
TE photo, March 2007
Historical Marker Text

Sabine Pass Cemetery

The oldest continually used cemetery in Jefferson County, This graveyard has served the citizens of the Sabine Pass area since the 1840s. The earliest documented grave is that of a 12-year-old John A. Dashiell, son of William V.C. and Mary Dashiell, who died on August 27, 1847. The large site now known as Sabine Pass Cemetery represents a combination of five formerly distinct burial grounds. Included in what was once called "The Colored Peoples Cemetery" is the unmarked grave of 108-year-old Louis Williams. Born a slave in Mississippi in 1813, Williams died on June 23, 1921.

Among the burials in this historic graveyard are those of many distinguished military veterans. Able Coffin (1792-1862) and Burwell Jackson (1783-1864) fought in the War of 1812. Jacob Harmon Garner (1814-1887), Benjamin Johnson (1815-1872) and Niles F. Smith (1800-1858) were Texas Revolution veterans. Soldiers and sailors from both the Union and Confederate forces of the Civil War also are interred here. The two Union sailors Patrick Ferlin and Albert W. Marshall, died of wounds sustained during the offshore naval encounter on January 21, 1863, while serving on the ship Morning Light. A number of Confederate veterans rest in the cemetery, as does Kate Dorman, dubbed "the heroine of Sabine Pass" for her assistance of the southern troops. A number of graves have been specially marked with military or state historical markers.

Maintained by Jefferson County and cared for by local volunteer organizations, the Sabine Pass Cemetery remains in use by citizens of the area. Its historic gravestones and monuments provide a unique component of the cultural history of Jefferson County.
(1999)
Sabin Pass Cemetery Historical Marker, Texas
Sabine Pass Cemetery Historical Marker
According to the historical marker, the cemetery contains the remains of both Confederate and (at least two) Union soldiers as well as veterans of the War of 1812, the War for Texas Independence and the reason for our visit, the final resting place of Kate Dorman, the "heroine of Sabine Pass."

The cemetery, which is still in use, has a deep and wide vacant spot in the middle. Although there are no tombstones, Mr. Block informed us that an estimated 100-150 people are buried in several mass graves here - hastily dug during a Yellow Fever epidemic.

Among the Yellow Fever victims and fallen soldiers, there also the remains of a young man who died in 1901 as a result of of shooting into a pit of unexploded ordnance left in an abandoned gun emplacement. His remains were covered and a cenotaph placed in Port Arthur's Evergreen Cemetery.

While the cemetery isn't fenced in black iron or rich with funereal statuary, it's a memorable cemetery to visit for its typical coastal flora and fauna - and for its somber timelessness. Ken Rudine, who is an avid birder, identified a large flock of white and black Egyptian Ibis that were wading in large puddles looking for food.

Sabine Pass Cemetery scene, Texas
Sabine Pass Cemetery scene
(Small historical marker denotes the Kate Dorman gravesite)

TE photo, March 2007
Sabine Pass Cemetery Texas  yellow fever mass graves
Several mass graves of Yellow Fever victims appear as an open field.
TE photo, March 2007
Sabine Pass Cemetery Texas crypt
Sabine Pass Cemetery Texas horizontal crypts
Crypts
TE photos, March 2007
Sabine Pass Cemetery Texas aluminum marker
One of the many aluminun markers made and installed by W. T. Block for graves that were in danger of becoming unknown.
TE Photo, March 2007
Ken Rudine and WT Block
Ken "Mr. Third Coast" Rudine discussing the cemetery with W.T. "Sir Cannonball" Block. TE Photo March 2007
Dick Dowling Marker, Sabine Pass Cemetery, Texas
Dick Dowling Marker near Sabine Pass Cemetery
TE photo, March 2007

To get to the battleground park, return to the intersection and go right on 3322. This road follows the Sabine Pass estuary which connects Sabine Lake with the Gulf of Mexico.... more

See
Sabine Pass Battleground State Historic Site
Sabine Pass

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