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Oakwood Cemetery's graceful chapel

Sacred landmark built in 1914 was designed by courthouse architect

Michael Barnes
mbarnes@statesman.com
Oakwood Cemetery Chapel Location: Main Avenue Dedicated: 1914

In at least one place, Austinites gathered as one.

Since 1839, Austinites of all backgrounds have been buried in Oakwood Cemetery, though originally in segregated sections. And since 1914, their survivors have gathered in the Oakwood Cemetery Chapel.

This little Gothic Revival gem was designed by Charles H. Page, the famed architect whose father worked on the construction of the State Capitol. With brother Louis Page, he designed several Austin landmarks, including the Littlefield Building (1911) and the Travis County Courthouse (1936). Page donated his design and construction skills to the chapel project.

According to a report written by Leslie Wolfenden, the Cemetery Association of Austin, headed by Mrs. Mary E. Mitchell, headed the drive for the chapel. Remodeled in 1944 by another prominent architect, J. Roy White, it still rises on Main Avenue on the formally divided grounds.

The cemetery itself is worth several chapters of Austin Untold Stories, but suffice it to say that the deteriorating chapel now needs help. Save Austin's Cemeteries has teamed with the Austin Parks and Recreation Department to raise the dollars needed to do it right.