Oakland Cemetery - Petersburg, IL

Brief Description:
Historical cemetery located in Menard County near Petersburg, IL. On May 16, 1870, the remains of Ann Rutledge, famous in history as the woman Abraham Lincoln loved in early life, were removed from the obscure grave at Concord, in which they have reposed for over forty years, and reinterred in Oakland Cemetery in this city. Also the famous American poet Edgar Lee Masters is also buried here.
Location:
This cemetery is located in Petersburg, Illinois, on Oakland Street, on the southwest side of town.
Ann Rutledge
Latitude / Longitude
N 40° 00.039
W 089° 51.411
Edgar Lee Masters
Latitude / Longitude
N 40° 00.060
W 089° 51.416
EcoCache ID:
17340001
Difficulty:
1 out of 5
Terrain:
1 out of 5
Submitting Group:
Nancy & Ed Gorny, GIS2GPS Team
Website:
http://www.ilega.org and http://www.gis2gps.com
Date Submitted
10/04/2008
Significance
Early cemetery with several important people buried here.
Long Description

Ann Mayes Rutledge
She was Abraham Lincoln’s First Love. Her death at the age of 22 led to Lincoln’s first known severe depression. The romance of Abraham Lincoln and Ann Rutledge inspires both poetry and controversy. Sometimes identified as the crucial event in young Lincoln's life, spurring him to greatness. Edgar Lee Masters memorialized the Ann Rutledge legend in an epitaph. His words are engraved on her tombstone.

Edgar Lee Masters
In 1914 Masters began a series of poems about his boyhood experiences in western Illinois, published (under the pseudonym Webster Ford) in Reedy's Mirror (St. Louis). This was the beginning of Spoon River Anthology (1915), the book that would make his reputation and become one of the most popular and widely known works in all of American literature. In "The Genesis of Spoon River" (American Mercury, Jan. 1933), Masters recalls how his interest turned to "combinations of my imagination drawn from the lives of the faithful and tender-hearted souls whom I had known in my youth about Concord, and wherever on Spoon River they existed." Though he would never equal the achievement or fame of Spoon River Anthology, he continued publishing poetry, novels, essays, and biographies for nearly thirty years. The amount and wide range of his production far exceeded its quality, by most accounts, and Masters's place in twentieth-century American literature is still debated.

Ann Rutledge
Pictures:
Edgar Lee Masters
Pictures:

Additional Resources
Ann Rutledge Resources
Edgar Lee Masters Resources

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