Ancient Sacré-Coeur cemetery explored during the Saturday visit

TEXARKANA, Texas – A living history performance brings the dead to life at “The Talking Dead: Sacred Heart Cemetery,” an event held in one of Texarkana’s oldest cemeteries.

Presented by the Texarkana Museums System starting at 8 p.m., the guided tour passes through cemetery tombs dating from the 1870s. The old church cemetery, which is different from the new Sacred Heart cemetery near the church, rests at the corner of Spruce and West 14th streets.

Agnes Rodgers is buried there, who in 1876 donated the land to the church so that it could be used as a Sacred Heart Cemetery. It is also registered as a Texas Historic Cemetery and includes the city’s founders.

“Texarkana was a melting pot of people from all over the world,” TMS curator Jamie Simmons said in a statement. “All of these new citizens brought their own cultural and religious customs here to Texarkana, adding another dimension to our cultural heritage.”

In an interview, Simmons said one of the founding families of the Sacred Heart donated the land while it was still beyond the city limits of Texarkana. This family was here when the town lots were sold, she said, and they are buried along the main alley, where the tour will begin.

“This is how far it goes,” she said. “Sacré-Coeur was the first Catholic church. Originally there was a Catholic congregation here in town, then the Catholic Church created a separate diocese for each state, so that’s when the Catholic Church on the Arkansas side was formed. “

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The cemetery offers a solid snapshot of Texarkana’s earliest history, the 1870s and 1880s, at the center of this tour.

“We’ve done a tour of this cemetery in the past, but we’ve got some new performance for this one,” Simmons said. “So every time we take a cemetery tour, regardless of the cemetery, we will have new performances. Even though we always feature some of the best-known families, we will have new people and a new path through the cemetery. himself. “

She warns that with the recent rains, it will be humid there. People should dress accordingly, she said.

“We’re going to see some of the older burials and talk about new stories,” Simmons said. Seven performances – with a wide range of people represented – will be included.

Parking is not available in the cemetery, but there is parking along Spruce Street, the curator said. “This is the side where the entrance is,” she said.

The TMS monitors the weather and if the tour needs to be canceled or rescheduled, it will post the information on the TMS Facebook page.

“Even though it’s evening, it’s something that I think families can enjoy together. It’s history from a different point of view. It’s history from a people’s point of view. who lived in that time, so they tell a first … story of a person. I think it’s interesting to hear these stories not often told, but also just to get the perspective of that period “Said Simmons,” how things would have been around this time.

Some of the memorials themselves are also interesting works of art, she said.

(Tickets: $ 15, or $ 10 for TMS members. Tickets must be purchased in advance. Purchase your tickets at For directions, parking or more information, call 903 -793-4831 or send email [email protected])

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