Pioneer Cemetery

Building Location: 

Sixth Avenue and Wood Street

Whitehorse, YT



Cultural History: 

This site, previously known as the 6th Avenue Cemetery, was renamed the Pioneer Cemetery in 1975 in recognition of the number of well-known Yukon citizens who are buried there. 

In early 1900, many townspeople petitioned to have the cemetery moved to a location outside of town, where the airport is now located. Not only did they want the land for other purposes, they were concerned that the decomposing bodies would contaminate their well supplies. 

It is believed that the cemetery was to have been extended to 7th Ave and Elliott. Other than a brief mention of three graves on 7th Ave., this is unsubstantiated. 

Among the pioneers buried in the cemetery are: Martha Black, Roland Ryder, George Ryder, Isabel McPherson, D.B. O’Connor, Mr. and Mrs. W.S. McGee, Mac Cyr, and Antoine Cyr. In addition, the 6 victims of the Yukon’s worst sternwheeler disaster, the explosion of the “Columbian” in 1906, are buried there.