Snake Girty Cemetery

The Snake Girty Cemetery is located 8 mile south of Webber's  Falls, Muskogee County, Oklahoma.    The setting is a beautiful wooded area, just south of I-40 and literally on the banks of the Canadian just above its confluence with the Arkansas River. The cemetery is fenced, gated and lockable.  It appears to  still be in use as a "community" cemetery.  At the back of the area is an inner plot, fenced by metal fencing which must have been the original burial plot of the Snake Girty family.  This enclosure contains  memorial stones for Snake Girty, his wife Kahugunstah,and at least one infant child and other graves on which their stones are so weathered as to make them unreadable.

The entire Snake Girty Cemetery contains  about 150 individual names recorded in the 1971 publication of the American Indian Institute, University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma :

"Our People and Where They Rest"
"A visit to one hundred two Old cemeteries in Northeast Oklahoma"
Volume 4, 1971
by James W. Tyner and Alice Tyner Timmons.


The cemetery's location is on the site of Snake Girty's land. Girty family history indicates that Snake, his family and progeny occupied this location between the Arkansas and Canadian rivers for quite some time before the final legal settlement of individual tribal members land distribution.  This fact is supported by the listing of both Snake Girty and his wife, Kahugunstah, on the 1880 role of the Cherokee Nation and on the Old Settlers roster.

* note:    About 1 mile west of the Snake Girty Cemetery is yet another Girty cemetery titled the "Thomas Girty Cemetery". It, too, has many head stones with the surname Girty. This is likely named for a brother or other relative of Snake Girty [but that is for another day and another story].


 
 

Gate and entrance to the Snake Girty Cemetery.
[ For perspective, a great, great, granddaughter of Snake Girty, Virginia, is shown in the background standing next to the Snake Girty obelisk and family plot fence.]

The larger cemetery is still growing with quite a number of relatively new graves.




 
 
 
Snake Girty family plot

The original "family" plot with its iron grate fence contains 2 erect stones marking the graves of  Snake, Kahugunstah and at least one infant grave.  Other flat or ground  stones are within the enclosure, but markings are indistinguishable.  The family plot is well back to the east of the rest of the cemetery overlooking a run which meanders down to the Canadian River and then into the Arkansas.



 
 
 
 
 

Doris [Girty] Prichard and Virginia [Coss] Moore are seen checking notes and stones just outside the family plot in the Snake Girty Cemetery. You can see Doris' great grandfather Snake Girty's obelisk inside the original family plot.  Snake would be Virginia's great great grand father.




 
 

SNAKE GIRTY          Born: January 10,  1818

                                                                                              Died: Oct. 7, 1903
                                                                                              Age : 85 years
 



 
 

SNAKE
HUSBAND OF
NANCY GIRDY
BORN
JAN. 10, 1818
DIED
OCT. 7, 1903
AGED
85 YEARS

The name Nancy Girdy (misspelling - Girty) was a second wife of Snake Girty.

This closeup of the lower part of the Obelisk honoring Snake Girty appears in dappled shade.  It is located beneath a large and very old native black walnut tree.  A very peaceful site.

 


KAHUGUNSTAH
WIFE OF
SNAKE GIRTY
DIED
AUG. 5, 1897
AGED
63 YEARS

Kahugunstah's age in the 1880 Role of the  Cherokee Nation, Indian Territory was given as 45 years. This would estimate her birth year as 1835.




 
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