Celtic Cross in McBurney (Skeleton) Park - Kingston, Ontario
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Trail Blaisers
N 44° 14.112 W 076° 29.293
18T E 381155 N 4899073
Quick Description: This Celtic Cross monument commemorates the ~10,000 Irish and Scottish immigrants who are buried here. In the late 19th Century, the cemetery which was full and in serious disrepair was "bulldozed" and turned into a municipal park.
Location: Ontario, Canada
Date Posted: 8/17/2014 12:32:57 PM
Waymark Code: WMM9GK
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member PeachyPA
Views: 3

Long Description:
This Celtic Cross monument commemorates the ~10,000 Irish and Scottish immigrants who are buried here. In the late 19th Century, the cemetery which was in serious disrepair was "bulldozed" and turned into a municipal park.

Inscription on the front reads:

In memory of the
Est. 10,000 mainly Irish & Scottish
Immigrants buried
here in Kingston’s
upper cemetery
1813 – 1865
May they rest
in peace

I gCuimhne na nDaoine
Atá curtha I Reilig
Kingston Uachtar
1813 – 1865
Suaimhneas Síoraí
Dá n-Anamnacha
Dílse

Built in 2002, the Cross was donated by Kingston Irish Folk Club, Tir na Nog Irish Pub, Kingston Brewing Co., and City of Kingston.


According to Kingston Irish Folk Club's website (link below), there are ~10,000 burials in the park. During the time it was open 1813-1865, citizens of Kingston and newly arrived immigrants suffered from a number epidemics including
* malaria outbreaks which killed a large number of labourers working on the Rideau Canal (1827 till 1832),
* cholera epidemics which killed an estimated 10% of Kingston’s population (1832 and again in 1834),
* typhus epidemic which killed over 1500 Irish immigrants and their. Kingstonian care givers (1847-48).


Although typhus (also called ‘ship fever’) epidemics had occurred in Canada since the 1650’s, the outbreak in the summer of 1847 was by far the worst. That year an estimated 50,000 Irish, bringing with them the dreaded, contagious typhus disease, came through Kingston. Having survived a perilous journey crossing the Atlantic Ocean in coffin ships and having witnessed the horrors of the quarantine station at Grosse Isle, they arrived in Kingston in overcrowded barges. They witnessed thousands of their fellow travelers, family and friends, weakened by hunger, die from the typhus throughout the long journey.

Many Kingstonians opened their homes to take care of the sick and dying Irish immigrants and in doing so the typhus spread throughout Kingston. An estimated 300 Kingstonians, having contacted typhus, died in 1847. Most would have been buried either in the mass grave at Kingston General Hospital or in McBurney (Skeleton) Park, Kingston’s Upper Cemetery from 1813 till 1865.
Website with background information about this Waymark: [Web Link]

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mTn_biKer65 visited Celtic Cross in McBurney (Skeleton) Park - Kingston, Ontario 8/19/2014 mTn_biKer65 visited it

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