Brewster Cemetery, Washington County, Nebraska


Also listed under the Papillion Cemetery Association. Brewster Cemetery is easily located by its lone evergreen tree. It receives very little care other than an occasional "clearing" by a troop of Blair Boy Scouts. Wild roses, poison ivy, small wild plum trees and prairie grasses share the space. There are thirteen identifiable graves. Three of Civil War veterans, four of children, and one of a young girl. The Pennington mother and daughter graves are unique in that they are enclosed by a rusting pipe-and-wire fence with a gate. Inside the fence is a Bridal Wreath spirea bush which must have been planted on the young girl's grave by the sorrowing mother, since she died nearly nine years after her daughter. A low growing, feathery plant bearing yellow blossoms, common in early-day flower beds, has escaped the confines of the fence and spread beyond. The century-old spirea continues to bloom each spring and the little creeping plant renews itself by self-seeding. Pennington descendants by other names reside in the county today, many unaware of the lonely graves on the hilltop.

On July 1, 1870, Martin V. McCormick and wife Nancy deeded slightly less than an acre and a half of land lying in the northeast corner of the northwest quarter of section 29 in Blair township to Israel Swihart for the purpose of cemetery grounds. After laying it out in lots Mr. Swihart, on April 8, 1876, deeded the same property to the Papillion Cemetery Association. He named the cemetery for his wife, Mary Brewster Swihart. The oldest date on a stone is February 1869 but this must have been a reburial as there was no cemetery at that time. The last is 1888. Many of the dead once resting here have been moved to the Blair and Kennard cemeteries. No record of the Papillion Cemetery Association can be found. There are many depressions, indicating plots, but no markers.

There are 19 graves in this cemetery according to this sites burial records.


Gayle Maine
Veterans Service Office
Blair, NE 68008
402-426-6838


  • Search WCGS Cemetery Records
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  • Brewster Cemetery is approximately 2 miles north of Kennard. It is 2.5 miles west on CR-26 from the intersection of CR-26 and Highway 30, which is a mile south of Blair. It will be on the south side of the road.


    NE 1/4 NW 1/4 Section 29 Township 18, Range 11, Washington County, NE. Two miles North of Kennard.

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