In the community

Volunteers give Rockville Cemetery a makeover

A $6,500 grant from the Oregon Commission on Historic Cemeteries went toward building a new fence for the Rockville Cemetery. (The Enterprise/File Photo)

ROCKVILLE – A small historic cemetery near the Oregon-Idaho border is now protected behind a fence, thanks to a group of volunteers who converged there in October.

About 50 people helped clean up the area and build the new fence, replacing a barb wire fence, around the Rockville Cemetery. The project was funded by a $6,500 grant from the Oregon Commission on Historic Cemeteries.

Bonnie MacKenzie applied for the grant and the work was done in one day.

“We began at 9 a.m. and completed the job by 6 p.m.,” said MacKenzie.

MacKenzie said 53 people – including youth – helped out.

“No one had to be told what to do, they just seemed to know and did it,” said MacKenzie.

The cemetery has 25 graves, mostly of homesteaders of the remote area.

The Rockville Cemetery is one of 14 graveyards across the state to receive grant funds for projects this year. To be an historic cemetery, the gravesites must include at least one person who died before 1909.