Since it's late October now, here's a slideshow from NE Portland's Columbian Cemetery, which sits next to I-5, inside the curve of the northbound Columbia Blvd. offramp. It's bordered by noisy roads to the west and south, and industrial warehouses to the north and east, and it's maybe not the most idyllic and restful final resting place out there. As with the Powell Grove Cemetery out at NE 122nd, the cemetery was here first, and then roads and general development encroached from all sides. I haven't come across anything like the Powell Grove legal battle here; maybe the state and county learned their lesson from the earlier conflict and routed I-5 around one side, instead of trying to dig up anyone's ancestors.I actually dropped by to find an old city boundary marker that a helpful Gentle Reader had sent me a tip about. Unlike Lone Fir, or Greenwood Hills, or the Grand Army of the Republic Cemetery, I gather that in general this spot is not the final resting place of prominent early pioneers or the rich and famous of any era. A chatty volunteer told me about a couple of interesting residents, including a former slave who had moved to Portland after the Civil War (who I was unable to locate), and a gentleman who held Portland Police badge #1 (and who, for some reason, was buried juuuust outside city limits).
I imagine he would have had additional stories to share, but the cemetery's equipment shed had been robbed a few days earlier, and he and another volunteer were busy figuring out the extent of the damage and how to secure the remaining equipment. I am not a superstitious person by any means, but the act of robbing a cemetery just calls out for some sort of nasty cosmic retribution. At minimum, it seems like the perpetrators ought to be cursed to wander the earth as tormented spirits, unable to enjoy a moment's peace until everything they stole is replaced. Even if that means chasing old tractor parts across the globe to a metal recycler in China or somewhere. That would be a good start, at least.