The annual Confederate Memorial Service organized by members of the Moses M. Buckner Chapter #2442, United Daughters of the Confederacy, is scheduled to be held at 2:30 PM Sunday, April 19, 2015, at the Walker’s Chapel Cemetery located near Reklaw, Texas. Participating in the memorial service along with UDC Chapter members will be members of the Cross of Saint Andrew’s Camp 2009 Sons of Confederate Veterans and Cross of Saint Andrew’s Southern Belles dressed in period mourning dress. The very impressive and moving ceremony rotates annually around Cherokee County being held at a different cemetery each year.
At least eight Confederate Army veterans to be honored in the memorial service are known to be buried in the Walker’s Chapel Cemetery.
UDC members attending the ceremony traditionally wear black hats, white blouses and blacks skirts. During the memorial service a brief family history about the life and times of each Confederate Veteran and their service being honored is read, generally by a descendant or other relative. A color guard in period dress presents and retires the colors, a roll call is answered and generally military salutes are fired by rifle or canon and taps are played. Members of the Cross of Saint Andrew’s Southern Belles wearing period costumes of hoop skirted black dresses with black bonnets and black mourning veils walk the cemetery and place a red rose on each Confederate Veteran’s grave.
Attendees are asked to bring a lawn chair as no seating is provided at the cemetery. Period Dress is optional. In case of inclement weather, the service will be cancelled, organizers said because the cemetery does not have a shelter. “Please come and join us as we honor our brave and courageous ancestors,’ the UDC organizers said. “Please come, everyone is invited, including descendants of the veterans being honored and relatives and friends of others buried in the cemetery.”
For more information contact UDC Chapter Historian Margaret Cavazos at 903-683-6148, UDC President Betty Miller at 903-586-9745 or Chapter Recorder of Crosses Linda Risinger at 903-369-4318. Light refreshments will be served at the cemetery following the memorial service.
Directions to the cemetery are as follows: From Jacksonville, take Hwy 79 toward Henderson. Turn right onto TX 204/Loop 456, travel 1.2 miles. Turn left to stay on TX 204/E State 204, travel 12 miles to Reklaw. Turn left onto FM235. The Reklaw City Limits sign is on the right. Turn left onto County Road 4404. Travel a short distance to cemetery on the right.
Directions from Rusk: Take Hwy 84 to Reklaw. Turn left onto TX 204. Turn right onto Farm-to-Market Road 235. Turn left onto County Road 4404.
Directions from New Summerfield: Take Farm-to Market Road 235 and watch for the cemetery sign.
The Moses M. Buckner Chapter #2442, United Daughters of the Confederacy, will not hold an April chapter meeting due to the memorial service being held this month. Regular chapter dinner meetings are generally held at 6 PM the third Tuesday of the month September–May except for December and April at a Jacksonville restaurant. For more information about the local UDC chapter contact chapter president Betty Jo Miller at 903-586-9745.
Prospective UDC members are invited to attend all chapter meetings. To be eligible for UDC or SCV membership applicants must provide proof of an ancestor who provided public or military service to the Confederate State of America during the Civil War 1861-1865.