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  • Writer's pictureJan Daum

History Etched in Stone

Every town has a history, and at this time of year, I thought it fitting to explore a little history in the form of visiting a very old cemetery in Round Rock.

The Round Rock Cemetery, also known as the Old Sam Bass Cemetery, was established in the early 1850’s and is the resting place for many old pioneers, bandits, heroes, and of course, children. In fact, the first resident of the Round Rock Cemetery is said to be a young girl around age 11.

A quick look around, especially on a cool, cloudy day, assures you this is a peaceful place. The stillness almost invites you to listen to the whispers of the dead as they tell their stories etched in stone. Some are quite readable, while some stones are deeply worn.

This is the resting place of  A.W. Grimes, a local lawman killed in a shootout in downtown Round Rock in 1878. It’s also the eternal home of Sam Bass, the outlaw responsible for the death of Grimes, and who also died as a result of that shoot out. You’ll probably recognize both of those names from the roads named after them.

Because the cemetery is a very old place, there are signs of disrepair, but there are also efforts to bring things back. And it isn’t unusual to see a new grave among the old. Out of respect, the new grave sites will be left out of this blog.

Walking through history like this is a humbling, yet peaceful experience. Although, as peaceful as it is in the light of day, I really would not want to be here at night!

Round Rock Cemetery is located on Sam Bass Road, just west of Chisholm Trail.

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