Hillsboro Pioneer Cemetery

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Hillsboro Pioneer Cemetery
Hillsboro Pioneer Cemetery entrance sign right - Oregon.JPG
Entrance to the cemetery
CountryUnited States
Coordinates45°31′14″N 123°00′22″W / 45.52056°N 123.00611°W / 45.52056; -123.00611Coordinates: 45°31′14″N 123°00′22″W / 45.52056°N 123.00611°W / 45.52056; -123.00611
Owned byCity of Hillsboro
Size8.42 acres (3.41 ha)

The Hillsboro Pioneer Cemetery is a pioneer cemetery in Hillsboro, Oregon, United States. It is located at the west end of the city along the Tualatin Valley Highway and adjacent to Dairy Creek. The 8.42-acre (3.41 ha) cemetery comprises three formerly private cemeteries. In 1973, the city of Hillsboro gained title to what is the oldest cemetery in Washington County.[1]


The cemetery is situated on what was previously part of the David Hill land claim that was recorded on July 4, 1847.[2] Hill died in 1850, and in 1860 the Masonic Order and the Independent Order of Odd Fellows (IOOF) established a cemetery on the current site.[3] The IOOF portion of the cemetery was to the east of the Masons' part.[4] Around 1915 another section owned by IOOF was added west of the Masons' section.[4] On August 7, 1973, the city of Hillsboro received the deeds to the cemeteries and took over maintenance and operations.[4]

In 1995, 155 grave sites were vandalized, causing over $75,000 in damage.[5] The city made improvements in 2012 with the addition of an arched, wrought-iron entry and information kiosk.[3] Paid for in part by a state grant, the project cost $13,000 to complete.[3] In 2014, the city completed a master plan to make $1.7 million in improvements, including sidewalks, parking, and fencing.[6]


Hillsboro Pioneer Cemetery is an irreducible fund cemetery organized under Oregon Revised Statutes 65.860 where all funds received go into a fund that is not reduced and only interest is used for maintenance.[7][8] Hillsboro's city recorder manages all records of the facility.[9] The Hillsboro Historical Society holds a semi-annual event at the cemetery that includes re-enactments by actors demonstrating the lives of some of those buried at the cemetery.[10]

Notable burials[edit]

Tongue family obelisk at the cemetery.


  1. ^ a b Hillsboro Pioneer Cemetery Inscriptions. Cemeteries. Retrieved on February 29, 2008.
  2. ^ Byrd, Dean H., Stanley R. Clarke, and Janice M. Healy. 2001. Oregon Burial Site Guide. Portland, Or: Binford & Mort Pub.
  3. ^ a b c Parks, Casey (May 31, 2012). "Hillsboro unveils new entryway, kiosk at pioneer cemetery". The Oregonian. Retrieved May 31, 2012.
  4. ^ a b c Historic names mark old gravestones. Hillsboro Argus, October 19, 1976.
  5. ^ Danks, Holly (August 17, 1995). "Vandals wreck Hillsboro graves". The Oregonian.
  6. ^ Hammill, Luke (June 4, 2014). "Hillsboro Pioneer Cemetery the subject of $1.7 million plan for improvements". The Oregonian. Retrieved June 5, 2014.
  7. ^ Irreducible Fund Cemeteries. Oregon Division of Finance and Corporate Securities. Retrieved on February 29, 2008.
  8. ^ List of IR Cemeteries. Oregon Division of Finance and Corporate Securities. Retrieved on February 29, 2008.
  9. ^ City Recorder. Archived 2008-02-25 at the Wayback Machine City of Hillsboro. Retrieved on February 29, 2008.
  10. ^ Homepage. Hillsboro Historical Society. Retrieved on June 19, 2007.
  11. ^ Hillsboro Pioneer Cemetery Inscriptions, S - T. Cemeteries. Retrieved on February 29, 2008.

External links[edit]