Burial Laws
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Burial Laws 1823 | Print |

On 20 January 1823 an act was passed by the board of trustees prohibiting burials in the town limits. In 1823, the city limits only extended to Fifth or Sixth Streets. This information was published in the St. Louis Engineer. No. 361 & 362

Vera Eaklor submitted this information for publication in the 1978 St. Louis Genealogical Society Quarterly, volume 11, number 3, page 76.

Whereas by the petition of sundry respectable inhabitants of the town of St. Louis to the board of trustees of said town representing that the practice of interring the dead in the Catholic burial ground within the limits and in the center of town is prejudicial to the health of the Citizens and praying that an ordinance may be passed prohibiting the same and it being specially the duty of the Police of the town to remove or prevent all causes of infection.

Therefore be it ordained by the board of trustees of the town of St. Louis that from and after the first day of April next it shall not be lawful for any person or persons to dig or cause to be dug within the limits laid down by an act of the General Assembly of the State of Missouri entitled “An act to incorporate the inhabitants of the town of St. Louis” approved the 9th Decr. 1822 any grave or space in the earth in any public burial ground or any ground set apart for the purpose of burial within the limits aforesaid with the intent to bury therein any dead body. Nor shall any dead human body be interred or deposited in any public cemetery within the limits aforesaid from and after the said first day of April next.

Be it further ordained that any Sexton, grave digger or other person violating this ordinance by digging any grave in any public burial ground within the limits of aforesaid shall forfeit and pay to the use of the Corporation the sum of twenty-five dollars as a fine for the offence aforesaid and any person or person causing or procuring any grave to be dug contrary to the intentions of this ordinance shall forfeit and pay to the use of the Corporation of the town of St. Louis the sum of fifty dollars as a fine for the offence aforesaid. And every person or persons having the care and keeping of any such cemetery or place of burial who shall knowingly and willfully suffer or permit any grave to be dug or dead body deposited or buried in the same for every such offence shall forfeit and pay to the use of the Corporation the sum of fifty dollars as a fine for the offence aforesaid.

This act to be in force from and after the passage thereof April next.

Passed Monday, January 20th, 1823
A. Gamble

 

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