On the spookiest day of the year, visitors of all ages are welcome to explore one of the oldest pioneer burial sites in Will County.
The Bolingbrook Historic Preservation Commission will be hosting its annual Boardman Cemetery Halloween Open House on Wednesday, October 31 from 5-9 p.m. at Boardman Cemetery. Admission is free and open to the public.
In addition to Trick-or-Treating, hot chocolate and cookies will be served. Free tours of the cemetery will be available every 20 minutes, and more adventurous attendees can try their hand at grave dowsing throughout the night. The commission will provide free cemetery maps and have local history books available for sale. Donations gratefully accepted.
Established in 1832, historic Boardman Cemetery is the community burial ground created by Captain Harry Boardman, an early settler and veteran of the Black Hawk Wars. By 1846, several pioneer families in the area such as Barber, Freeman, Ingalls, Paxson, Royce, Standish, Strong, Wescott, and Whallon were interred at the site. Although active into the 1920s, the cemetery became overgrown and abandoned over time. Rediscovered in 1972 by 16 year old, Lois Michael, the cemetery was deeded and restored by DuPage Township and the Bolingbrook Historic Preservation Commission.
As the area grew, the Heritage Creek subdivision was built around the historic cemetery. The subdivision streets surrounding the cemetery are named after the early settlers who are buried in Boardman Cemetery.
The cemetery underwent a Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) Project in June2017 to account for the full tally of individuals buried on the site. Boardman Cemetery also played host to a hands-on cemetery restoration project presented by the Fountaindale Public Library, DuPage Township, and the Bolingbrook Historic Preservation Commission. During the two day session, twenty headstones were repaired and cleaned on the property. Results from the GPR investigation and the restoration workshop will be on display.
Boardman Cemetery is located off Royce Road on Paxton Drive in the Heritage Creek Subdivision. Heritage Park is right across the street. The cemetery is accessible from Paxson Drive. Don’t forget to check-in at Boardman Cemetery on Facebook during your visit.
Have a Happy Halloween and We’ll See You at the Cemetery!