Major Ripley Allen Arnold is just one of many soldiers buried in Pioneers Rest Cemetery (see Part 1). Volume 1 of our outdoor history books contains veterans of every war from the War of 1812 to World War II. There is even a veteran of the Franco-Prussian War (1870-1871). Among those soldiers who are given fuller treatment elsewhere in Hometown by Handlebar are:
• General Edward H. Tarrant, for whom the county is named.
• General J. J. Byrne, who had a premonition of his own death.
• Abe Harris, buried not far from Arnold, Tarrant, and Byrne, fought in the Mexican-American War (1846-1848) and was serving under Major Arnold when Fort Worth was established in 1849. According to Harris’s obituary in 1915, he commanded the squad of men who cut down trees to make logs for the first building in the fort. Early in the twentieth century (1905) Harris was one of the first to urge a monument to honor Major Arnold. It took us 109 years, but finally, on June 6, 2014 Major Arnold got his monument. When Harris died he was thought to be the last of the original soldiers of Fort Worth. (Clips are from the December 12, 1909 Star-Telegram and February 22, 1905 Telegram.)
The Fort Worth Genealogical Society says the cemetery contains the graves of more than 140 Confederate veterans. On this Iron Cross of Honor, “Deo Vindice” (“Under God, [Our] Vindicator”) was the motto of the Confederacy.
The cemetery also contains the graves of eleven soldiers who died while serving at Fort Worth in 1851 and 1852.
(September 2022: Pioneers Rest Cemetery Association seeks volunteers to support Fort Worth’s oldest cemetery. Contact Melanie Smith at (817) 332-8515 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Pioneers Rest Cemetery Association has a Facebook page.)