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Video: Every cemetery tells a story


And local historian Jeff White knows how to read it

LANSING, Ill. (August 11, 2023) – Local historian and history teacher Jeff White walked through Oak Glen Lutheran Cemetery with Josh, describing how a town cemetery provides insight about that town’s history, if you know what to look for. White’s tour included references to the German and Dutch pioneers who first settled this area, the gradual increase in diversity in the town and the cemetery, a stop at the children’s section of the cemetery, a note about headstones and brick ovens, and appreciation for veterans and their quiet pride in the service they performed.

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Josh Bootsma
Josh Bootsma
Josh is Managing Editor at The Lansing Journal and believes in the power and purpose of community news. He covers any local topics—from village government to theatre, from business openings to migratory birds.


  1. Wish he would have mentioned the VIERK family, as we are older residents in town then those he mentioned! :/.

  2. FYI: Trinity owns this cemetery with ST. JOHNS, LANSING. This is the only combination where one will find the 2 Lutheran Churches together. Also, one has to be a member of either church to be buried there, over the last 20 years.

  3. Great job Josh and Jeff ! Very informative .I never looked at that cemetary before like that . I will now look at it different. I have a few friends in there a
    and an old girlfriend !

  4. Very well done!! I also have some friends buried there. I look forward to your next Lansing town history story!

  5. Where were you standing at the beginning of the video?. I think the headstone belongs to a relative of my husband. I cannot make out the names but would like to go see it. I’m thinking it may be my husband’s grandfather’s brother and wife. His grandparents are a couple rows inside the west alley gate entrance but we couldn’t ID the area where you were

    • Hi Sue. We opened the video pretty much in the middle of the two alleys, and something like 50 feet from the cemetery’s southern border. I hope you find the grave you’re looking for!

  6. Thank you to Jeff White and Josh for the wonderful informative and historical tour of the Oak Glen Lutheran Cemetery. Please do a program on the Oak Ridge Cemetery.

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