Leon Cemetery

Leon, Center Township, Section 29

Photograph courtesy Bob Bixby
AB - CD - EF - GH - IJ - KL - MN - OPQ - RS - TUV - WXYZ
Nearest town: Leon
Cemetery GPS Coordinates: 40.7450,-93.7572
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History: The oldest known cemetery of Leon was located about one mile east of Leon on Highway #2. The old road went straight east instead of curving north, and this cemetery was on the south side of the road. There were reported about 20 graves there.

Later a Leon Cemetery was established in it's present location (Center Township. Section 29) and burials were made in the section to the east of the main gate. (This section is now known as "Original Cemetery.") Some donations were given to the city to remove the bodies from the old original cemetery east of Leon and for their interment in the Leon Cemetery. Supposedly they were buried just west of the main gate. Probably the whole original Leon Cemetery was the Original Section and the east one-half of Section D.

Much of the information in this history is from the "History of Leon Cemetery Association" written by Edgar H. Epperly, President, in 1974. In 1912 the Leon Cemetery Association was organized for one purpose only, to assist the city in the beautification and upkeep of the cemetery.

An iron fence and two iron gate entrances were built about 1912. This was done to keep the cemetery from being used as a pasture for livestock. Back in the horse and buggy days there were very few cars and livestock was not in danger of being hit by cars, so they were turned loose to forage for themselves, and often entered the cemetery for grazing. In 1914 the association "destroyed gopher mounds and skunk dens."

The previous county coordinator was told that the southwest corner across from the golf course is considered to be the Catholic section of the cemetery.

Important Dates

  • 1850 Decatur County organized
  • 1853 Leon became county seat
  • 1855 First marked burials in Leon Cemetery (#8-10 Sect. D and #1-20 Original)
  • xxxx Section A-B-C-D added
  • 1912 Leon Cemetery Association organized
  • 1912 Iron fence and 2 iron gates built
  • 1915 First graveled road in cemetery from gate to tool house
  • 1916 Section 1-2-3-4-5 added to west (Cummins Addition)
  • 1922 Pergola built
  • 1928 Rocks donated to build gate entrance & bridge inside gate
  • 1930 Road graveled from Highway #2 to cemetery
  • 1940 Section E-F-G added (Memorial Addition)
  • 1967 Baby Land organized in Section E
  • 1972 Iron fence removed and sold.
    Money used to buy marble markers at entrance with words "Leon Cemetery" on each pillar
  • 1975 North section added

Map courtesy Bob Bixby
Thank you to Bob Bixby and to the City of Leon for making records available to us. This is a transcription directly from the city records of the cemetery and various other sources.

Original Section Source: Cemeteries of Decatur Co. IA, complied by Lois Slade and transcribed for our site by Janice Lira.
Section A first canvassed for 1976 County Bicentennial, complied by Lois Slade. Input by Janice Lira, August 31, 1999.
Sections B, C & D partially canvassed by Carla Rae in 2001.
Sections 1, 2, 3, 4, E, F. G, & North Addition not canvassed as of October of 2014.

Transcriptions updated and reformatted by Conni McDaniel Hall, 2019.
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