bonanza cemetery
My edition of McArthur (Oregon Geographic Names) says Bonanza is so named “because of a number of fine springs in the area.” Given the aridity of the neighborhood, a few springs wouldn’t hurt.

The cemetery covers five or more acres, though the front section is as yet unused. It’s dead flat if surrounded by the ubiquitous forested hills of this region. The old cabin (1880) in front of the cemetery is a nice addition, though it doesn’t seem to have much to do with cemetery per se. An attached sign says the cabin was “restored by the Nichols family in 1980 as a memorial to all pioneers of this area.” You’ll note from the photos that it may need a little re-restoration.

Cemetery inhabitants here are a well disciplined bunch if not overly loquacious. And speaking of ubiquitous, the ubiquitous American flag is joined here by the Oregon one. Virtually every cemetery in the state has sprouted a flag pole of late, if it didn’t already have one. Quite what patriotism has to do with death is a tad beyond me. Most of the inhabitants of these places didn’t die defending the cause or the Motherland or, dare I say it, the flag. A few, yeah, but what the heck does the American flag have to do with the eschatology of eternity? (Is there another kind of eschatology?)

Me thinks, yes, it does have to do with death, because in America patriotism has gotten confused with fundamental Christianity, and the flag in this case has morphed into a religious symbol, a substitute for the cross, as it were.

It’s OK, I guess, but, gosh, I already knew where I was. And I expect visitors to any cemetery knows where they are, too.


Bonanza, all 415 people, is some twenty-five miles east of Klamath Falls on Hwy. 70, which has the distinction of being the shortest highway in the state. It ends at Bonanza. Head east out of town on Langell Valley Rd. Cemetery on the edge of town on the south side of the road. The cemetery proper, while visible, is set back from the road. Fronting the cemetery is an old, historic building.
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