Potter’s Field stories part of speaker’s series

Pete Gabrielson, a member of the Oconto County Historical Society, will present a program Dec. 7 as he uncovers the diverse and captivating life stories of individuals laid to rest in Potter’s Field at Oconto Evergreen Cemetery.

The historical society will present its monthly Speaker Series Program at 6:30 p.m. in the meeting room of the Beyer Home and Carriage House Museum, 915 Park Ave., Oconto.

Gabrielson will share the amazing life stories of some of those individuals interred in Potter’s Field to help give a deep understanding of the rich fabric of Oconto County’s history.

In 2017, Gabrielson began a journey to learn more about the lives of those buried in the unmarked graves in the Evergreen Cemetery. Since then, with the help of many people, a lot of things have happened, including the creation of several web pages dedicated to the information about the Potter’s Field and the people buried there and the establishment of the Oconto Evergreen Cemetery Potter’s Field Memorial Plaza, which was dedicated in May 2023, as a touching tribute to forgotten individuals.

The ongoing research continues as people from all over the country occasionally contact Gabrielson with previously unknown information about the individuals buried here.

Gabrielson is a retired Oconto Unified School District social studies teacher and a performer in local theater, and the historical society’s cemetery walks If Tombstones Could Talk. A fascination with family members who settled in the Oconto Bay Shore area and were inspired by stories he collected from the people who lived there led to the writing of an article featured in the Voyageur magazine. Researching that article led Gabrielson to discover Potter’s Field in the Evergreen Cemetery.

The program is free, and light refreshments will be served.