Pioneer Park was not always the beautiful open space that it is today. It was the site of Gawler’s first cemetery. The land was allocated for the town’s public cemetery on the original plan by Colonel William Light. It was a rectangular section on a hilltop, bounded by Murray Street, Horrocks Place and Union Street. The first recorded burial was two-year old Ellen Fielding on 10 January, 1847.
Until 1857, when the first Gawler Council was incorporated, the cemetery had no form of management and the records of burials were kept by the Minister of St George’s Anglican Church. Graves were dug in all parts of the cemetery, many having headstones and iron railing fences.
A total of 471 people, a large number of them children, were interred in this cemetery. The land was used for burials until 1870 when the cemetery was officially closed. The cemetery site was dedicated as parkland in the 1930s and redeveloped as such thereafter.
Pioneer Park List of Interments - Click Here