• December 27, 2014

Pioneer Walker Cemetery in Cove shrouded in mystery

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Posted: Friday, March 22, 2013 4:30 am | Updated: 11:53 am, Wed Jul 16, 2014.

With more than 100 years of age engraved in stone, Pioneer Walker Cemetery is among one of the oldest burial sites in Coryell County.

“There isn’t a whole lot known about it,” said Homer Perryman, the Coryell County Historical Commission chairman. He added that the marked graves belong to prominent Killeen-area families.

The small graveyard is nestled in the Pioneer addition of the Walker Subdivision at the end of the Jay Drive cul-de-sac.

According to city documents, the addition that included the development of the cul-de-sac was platted in 1998. The acreage containing the cemetery was given to Copperas Cove in 2002, states the Coryell Central Tax Appraisal District’s website. It is maintained by the city.

Before the land became a housing area, it was called Walker Ranch, said an official with the development company that built the neighborhood. That land was deeded to the Walkers probably 100 years ago, he said.

But no Walkers are listed among the buried whose deaths were marked as late as 1907. But a few graves are missing headstones. Eight burial markers can be read, through some have toppled and broken.

“Jesse Moore Clements,” said Bobbie Thornton, a former historical commission member who did a survey of several grave sites in Coryell County between 1978 and 1982 with her mother. Clements is probably the most noteworthy person buried at the site.

His tombstone reads that he was born in Feb. 4, 1829, and died sometime in 1900. The month and day are not discernible.

“He is actually the one who gave some of the land for the city of Copperas Cove,” Thornton said.

Clements married Paralee Cosper. She is buried inside an iron fence next to his grave site, Thornton said. She lived from 1818 to 1878.

And that explains why three other Cospers, including George Price, the son of CH and Rebecca Cosper, are buried at the cemetery with larger headstones that are surrounded by an iron fence.

The oldest person buried at the site was Jeremiah Crook, born Dec. 8, 1798. He died Sept. 24, 1883, according to his headstone, which brandishes the Free Mason symbol above his name.

“Jeremiah Crook was a preacher,” Thornton said.

Thornton said she believes there are several rows of neatly clustered unmarked graves at the cemetery site, making it more interesting.

Fort Hood moved several graves to city cemeteries in Copperas Cove, Killeen and Gatesville after the post was created, Thornton said. Fort Hood has a list of all the graves it moved.

“There are a lot of unknowns from Fort Hood, and that is why I think they were out there buried in Walker,” she said.

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