every park in portland

EPIP: Lone Fir Cemetery

SE 26th Avenue & SE Washington Street
Neighborhood: Buckman

Lone Fir isn’t run by Portland Parks & Rec, but I’m adding it because it’s one of my favorite places to wander through. The cemetery was officially incorporated in 1866, though people were buried in the area a couple decades before then, including the very first person to be buried in the area, Emmor Stephens, in 1846, back when the area was just farmland.

Emmor Stephens’ gravestone. Look at that left slanting italics!

I’ve walked through this cemetery so many times. When I walked through a couple of days ago, there was a funeral happening, and my first thought was “It’ll be nice to meet them [the dead person] after the funeral is over.” That’s how often I go to this cemetery. (I also noticed that they are doing work on the memorial garden/thing for the Chinese immigrants and asylum patients who were unceremoniously buried in the southwest corner of the cemetery, which is great.)

Beautiful place to stroll through and remind yourself that you’ve only got a set amount of time on this Earth.

Aesthetics: I think it’s beautiful. Cemeteries might not be your cup of tea, but I still think the area in general is lovely. 9/10

Function: It’s a place to put dead people. Let’s be honest, burial doesn’t really make a lot of sense in modern times, so I’m giving this a low score, but then adding some points for walkability. 4/10

Sketchiness: The sketch factor of this cemetery is generally low, but I’ve definitely seen some weirdos wandering around. Nothing like drug deals or criminal activity, but, you know, people who like to hang around in cemeteries. 3/10