By ASHLEY INGE
STEPHENVILLE (November 2, 2018) – The Friends of the Dick Smith Library and The Stephenville Historical House Museum are sponsoring the 11th annual Spirits of Erath Cemetery Walk at the West End Cemetery on Sunday, Nov. 4. Performances begin at 2 p.m. and 3:30 p.m.
“Each year we choose people in Erath County and Stephenville’s past and we have actors and actresses to portray them. They are dressed in period costume and have five-minute little skits that they present,” said Glenda Stone, event organizer. “We break into groups and go to the five tour spots in a clockwise motion until each group has visited each spot.”
This year, the theme is World War I.
“Usually we don’t have a specific topic but it’s the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I which was on Nov. 11, 1918, and all of our spirits have something to do with World War I,” Stone said.
The Sweet Memories Ladies Barbershop Group will provide the musical entertainment before the tour begins.
The Cemetery Walk has five tour stops. One stop is a nurse, Lucy Hennigan, who was a nurse during World War I. One stop is a Gold Star mother, Rose Emma Boyd, and a Gold Star widow, Ethel Bird, from World War I. Another tour stop involves Tarleton Coach, W. J. Wisdom. Another stop involves Erath County’s first WWI draftee, H. Grady Perry. Another tour stop includes a survivor of the Tuscania ship that was torpedoed and sank, Quince Golightly, and his sister, Grace Driver.
Local actors will be Jim and Katrina Hinson, Lori LaRue, M.J. Loyd, Jim Perry, Ed Tober, and Sheran Weible. Costuming is provided by the Tarleton Theatre Department.
The Cemetery Walk usually lasts from an hour to an hour and a half.
Admission is $5 with the proceeds benefitting both sponsors. Attendees who would like to purchase an anniversary program can purchase one for $5 each as well.
“[The anniversary program] is a cumulation of all of the spirits that we have done for the first ten years and we did a little bit about them and made it into a pamphlet. We’re going to sell it again this year,” Stone said. “We’re not going to have this year’s in it, it’s still going to be the first ten years, but some people will come who didn’t get it last year, so it’s a pamphlet of all the spirits that we have done through 2017.”
Also available is county-wide publication listing all known World War I veterans buried in Erath County.
Stone said that the thing that people enjoy the most about the Cemetery Walk is “finding out things about Erath County [as well as] learning more about the history of Erath County.”
“They will be in for a fun afternoon,” Stone added.
Those attending are encouraged to wear comfortable shoes, hats and sunscreen. A folding chair may be brought but must be moved from station to station. Water will be provided. Please note there are no restrooms at the cemetery.
Parking will not be available inside the cemetery but Tarleton has given permission for attendees to use the new parking lot across from the cemetery on Lillian Street.
For more information, call Glenda Stone at 254-967-4955.