Tuesday, August 25, 2009

"Pioneer in the new 'City of the Dead' at Dove Creek"

Martin Monroe Hatfield was the first burial in the Dove Creek Cemetery (Dove Creek, Colorado). His obituary states: "Mr. Hatfield has been three times a pioneer. His first being in Kansas, then Oklahoma, and two years ago he came to Colorado. He loved the pioneer life and it is fitting that he should become the pioneer in the new "City of the Dead" at Dove Creek."

The plaque attached to the headstone reads:
Martin M. Hatfield
1857-1918
First Grave in Cemetery

This next picture was taken in 2001 at the Dove Creek Cemetery looking south toward the location of where the Hatfield farm would have been.

Also buried in the Dove Creek Cemetery is Martin M. Hatfield's daughter, Lillie Smith, and his son, Charles O. Hatfield.

Obituary for Martin Monroe Hatfield:
The funeral services of Martin M. Hatfield, who died suddenly at Dove Creek Friday, were held at the Dove Creek school house Tuesday afternoon and were conducted by Rev. C. L. Flanders of the Dolores Baptist church. Music was furnished by a mixed quartet composed of O. J. Shultz, wife and daughter and Mr. McConnell. A large concourse of people were present to bear testimony of the esteem in which the deceased was held. His remains were laid to rest in the new cemetery at Dove Creek.
Martin Monroe Hatfield was born in Boone County, Iowa, April 18, 1857 and died at his home in Dove Creek, Colorado, May 31, 1918, at the age of 61 years, 1 month and 13 days. In early manhood he became a Christian and united with the Baptist Church and proved himself a good true Christian man. At the time of his death, he was superintendent of the Dove Creek Sunday School.
On New Year's Day, 1879, he was married to Nancy Abbagel McNeil at Smith County, Kansas. He leaves a wife, nine children, twelve grandchildren, three brothers and a host of friends to mourn his departure.
The deceased was a member of the Farmers Union of Dove Creek, which organization took charge of the burial. He took an active interest in all the affairs of the community that were for the benefit and uplift of the same.
The day before his death, he was at the farmer's meeting at Cahone and in the morning of his death ate a hearty breakfast and went about the place doing his usual chores. About the middle of the forenoon he was stricken with neuralgia of the heart and passed away before medical aid could reach him.
He was conscious to the last and realized his time had come and he gave directions to his loved ones as to his burial and their remaining together in this new country.
A plot of ground was selected on his farm for a cemetery and he was laid to rest amid the scenes of his hearts greatest desire while in this life.
Mr. Hatfield has been three times a pioneer. His first being in Kansas, then Oklahoma, and two years ago he came to Colorado. He loved the pioneer life and it is fitting that he should become the pioneer in the new "City of the Dead" at Dove Creek.

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