Chippiannock Cemetery

Coordinates: 41°28′54″N 90°34′40″W / 41.48167°N 90.57778°W / 41.48167; -90.57778
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Chippiannock Cemetery
Celtic Cross near entrance, designed by Alexander Stirling Calder
Chippiannock Cemetery is located in Illinois
Chippiannock Cemetery
Chippiannock Cemetery is located in the United States
Chippiannock Cemetery
Location2901 Twelfth St.
Rock Island, Illinois
Coordinates41°28′54″N 90°34′40″W / 41.48167°N 90.57778°W / 41.48167; -90.57778
Area77 acres (31 ha)
ArchitectAlmerin Hotchkiss
Architectural styleClassical Revival
Late Gothic Revival
NRHP reference No.94000437[1]
Added to NRHPMay 06, 1994

Chippiannock Cemetery is a rural cemetery located on 12th Street and 31st Avenue in Rock Island, Illinois, United States. The word “Chippiannock” is a Native American term which means “place of the dead”.[2] It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1994.


Rock Island was in need of a permanent cemetery in 1854. The town's population was 5,000 and the dead were being buried somewhat haphazardly in Bailey Davenport's pasture, which is now Longview Park.[3] The first board of directors of the Chippiannock Cemetery Association included Holmes Hakes, S.S. Guyer, William L. Lee, Bailey Davenport, and Henry A. Porter. In 1855 Chippiannock's founders purchased 62 acres (25 ha) on Manitou Ridge and secured the services of noted landscape architect Almerin Hotchkiss to design a cemetery patterned in the rural cemetery style of Mt. Auburn in Massachusetts (America's first garden-style cemetery). Almerin Hotchkiss also designed Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn and Bellefontaine Cemetery in St. Louis.

Cable monument by Paul de Vigne

The property consists of a western slope and the crest of Manitou Ridge. The site features gently rolling wooded hills that climb to a broad plateau. It is located near the midpoint between the Mississippi and Rock Rivers. Hotchkiss designed a system of curvilinear driveways winding around the various burial sections.

The cemetery includes impressive monuments by Alexander Stirling Calder and Paul de Vigne. Many of the monuments reflect attitudes about death and mourning from the Victorian Era. Some of the more memorable grave markers include life-size stone statues, a ship's anchor, a six-ton granite ball, a baby's cradle, the sleeping dog statue guarding the Dimick children, and the mourning woman at the Cable monument.[3]

The Sexton's House is a Gothic Revival farmhouse that predates the cemetery. It continues to serve as the home of the cemetery superintendent. There are more than 25,000 people buried at Chippiannock Cemetery.[3] The preservation of the cemetery is the responsibility of the Chippiannock Cemetery Heritage Foundation as well as other interested citizens.

Chippiannock was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on May 6, 1994.[1] It was the first cemetery in Illinois to be listed on the National Register.[2]

Popular culture[edit]

It is an important location in Max Allan Collins's graphic novel Road to Perdition, which was the basis for the film of the same name, starring Tom Hanks and Paul Newman.

Notable burials[edit]

Denkmann Mausoleum


  1. ^ a b "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. March 13, 2009.
  2. ^ a b Alma Gaul (June 14, 2015). "Chippiannock also is 'registered'; Riverside is candidate". Quad-City Times. Davenport, Iowa. Retrieved June 16, 2015.
  3. ^ a b c "Chippiannock Cemetery, 2901 12th Street". City of Rock Island. Archived from the original on May 5, 2011. Retrieved April 1, 2011.

Further reading[edit]

Sexton's House
  • “150 Years of Epitaphs at Chippiannock Cemetery”. Rock Island, Ill.: Chippiannock Cemetery Heritage Foundation, 2006.
  • “Passages: A Collection of Personal Histories of Chippiannock Cemetery”. Bettendorf, Iowa: Razor Edge Press, 2006.
  • "Chippiannock Cemetery" (Images of America series). ISBN 0738577413. Arcadia Publishing, 2010.

External links[edit]