WPA - Cooper Cemetery, Barr Township, Macoupin County IL

A Transcription of the WPA Record in Macoupin County Archives, Carlinville, Illinois
by Mary McKenzie


 Barr Township
Macoupin County
Section 17/11/9

Cooper Cemetery
Barr Township 17/11/9
2 Miles Southwest of Barr Store
Macoupin County, Illinois
Name of Cemetery Cooper
Location NE 1/4 of the NE 1/4 of sec. 17 Town 11-range 9
Oldest Grave John Parkes; died 12-13-1843; age 70 yrs 7 ms & 23 days
Number of lots 5
Number of graves 25
Number of graves to be filled 7
Number of graves to be leveled 8
Number of Veterans graves that need stones none
Number of stones in cemetery that need resetting 15
Number of stones that need recutting 5
Rods offence around cemetery 52 ft x 65 ft 14 1/2 rods
Condition of fence Fair
Rods of fence to be repaired all
Rods of fence to be replaced none
Number of people interviewed 3

Notes: R R Cooper owned land in 1875

A man by the name of Robert Cooper own the land when the cem. was laid off. Mr. Cooper's folks are buried in the cem. There are some folk by the name of Maxfield and Parks also buried in the cem. The cem is far in a pasture about 1/2 mi. from the public road in Sec. 17 11 9 Barr township , 1 mi west & 1/2 mi South of Barr Store. The man that owns the land now is Mr. E. C. Clark and there is no deed for the Cemetery in the abstracts of Mr. Clark's deed. The Cem is in a poor condition, weed, sprouts and some of the stones broken down. Graves sunken and Ground hogs working in the Graves. There seems to be nobody around there that knows much about the Cem. when started or anything only that there are a few Graves back in the edge of the timber in the pasture.

The Cooper Cemetery is a small private cemetery which was laid out by Robert Cooper in 1840 for the benefit of the Cooper family. This cemetery is located on the E. C. Clark farm on Section 17 of Barr Township. There isn't anyone near the cemetery who could tell us anything about the cemetery except that it is referred to as the Cooper Graveyard; however there are a number of Maxfields and Parks buried there.

The land records of Macoupin County have been searched for a deed to this small burial grounds or an exception to the cemetery in the transfer of the land in that section; but none has been found. The present owner of the land has been contacted and his abstracts do not except the cemetery.

The only description that we can give of the Cooper cemetery is by the measurements made by the fieldmen, which read as follows:

A plot of ground 45 feet on the North and South sides and 52 feet on the East and West sides and being in the NE. 1/4 of the NE. VA of Section 17, T. 11 N. R. 9, West of the Third Principal Meridian, containing about 1/12 of an acre, situated in the County of Macoupin and State of Illinois.

This small cemetery is not incorporated.

There are no known trustees to the Cooper Cemetery at the present time.

The Cooper Cemetery lies back in a pasture on the E. C. Clark farm on the edge of a timber and is in an almost forgotten state. Weeds, sprouts and brush have grown high. The land is infested with ground-hogs. 25 graves have been counted in this cemetery and 15 of them need filling and leveling. There is no driveway to or in the cemetery.

To reach the Cooper Cemetery one must travel 1 mile west and about 1/2 mile South of Barr Store to the E. C. Clark farm. The cemetery lies about 1/2 mile across a pasture west on the edge of a timber.

There are no known veterans buried in the Cooper Cemetery.

The oldest grave in the Cooper Cemetery that we can locate by the date on the markers is that of John Parks, who died on December 13, 1842. Age 70 yrs.


ROBERT COOPER, the original owner and donor of the land for the Cooper Cemetery, was born in Christian County, Kentucky on January 22, 1828, the fourth of a family of 8 children. He lived in Christian County, Kentucky till he was about 8 years of age. He attended the early schools there for a short time.

In 1836, the Cooper family came to Illinois and settled in Greene County, about 8 miles north east of Carrollton. Here Robert Cooper finished his schooling and worked upon the farm. He remained with his parents until he was 23 years of age.

In 1850, Robert Cooper was married to Miss Amarine Parks, daughter of John Parks. This young couple bought a farm of their own which they tended for 5 years.

In 1855, Robert Cooper moved to Macoupin County, Illinois and settled on Section 17 of Barr Township. He worked hard at his farming and stock raising and became one of the prosperous farmers of the county. At one time his farm consisted of 445 acres lying in one body hi Section 17 and 35 acres of that amount was in Section 16.

In 1859 Mrs. Cooper died, leaving Mr. Cooper with the care of three children. In November 1870, Mr. Cooper married Lizzie Ridings and one child was born to them. After the second Mrs. Coopers death, which occurred in 1872, Mr. Cooper was married to Miss Mary Bacon and they became the parents of 4 children, thus making a family of 8 children in all.

Mr. Cooper was originally a Whig, but later became a Republican. He had never taken an active part in politics and never sought public office.

For 25 years he was a member of the United Baptists Church and was later connected with the Goshen Church I the east part of Barr Township.

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