The Burton Historical Cemetery is situated at end of Lower McCormack Road, at the trailhead of the Burton Walkway. The cemetery was established in 1923 by the Women’s Institute of Burton and maintained until the mid-1960’s. The construction of the Keenleyside Dam and the subsequent flooding of the Columbia River forever changed the landscape and the small communities situated in the flooded area. The Burton Historical Cemetery remains in its original townsite location and in the 1960’s was encased and covered to prevent high water damage to the burial grounds.
Over the many years that followed, the cemetery site had largely been neglected and overgrown with vegetation. The knowledge of the cemetery’s history was limited and misunderstood by visitors and by local residents who moved to Burton after the flood.
In 2021, a decision was made by the Friends of the Burton Walkway to restore the cemetery, to better understand its historical significance and to honour the people that are buried at the site.
A CBT/RDCK Community Initiative Grant was awarded in 2022 to support the following project activities and initiate the process of restoring the Cemetery:
- In partnership with the Arrow Lakes Historical Society, historical research was conducted on the cemetery and the 97 people who are buried at the site (view the detailed report here);
- Upon completion of the research, a community event was organized to share information about the cemetery and build community knowledge (watch the presentation here);
- The Burton Walkway and cemetery area were professionally documented and mapped; and
- The process to improve signage for the cemetery is currently underway.