St. Peter’s Cemetery. [2013, Dunlap]
Cemetery of the Church of St. Peter the Apostle. Catholicism and Portuguese national identity are closely tied together at the Cape end, as even the briefest stroll through the 12-acre Cemetery of the Church of St. Peter the Apostle will reveal, on headstones carved with names like Avellar, Cabral, Cordeiro, Corea, Costa, Duarte, Dutra, Ferreira, Flores, Lopes, Macara, Santos, Silva, Souza, and Taves. If you look closely, however, you will also find Irish names and birthplaces, attesting to the earliest Catholic cohort in town.
Even before there was a church on Prince Street, there was a Roman Catholic cemetery. The land was acquired in 1869, on behalf of the Diocese of Boston, by the Rev. Cornelius O’Connor, who also laid out the grounds. When the Diocese of Providence, R.I., was separated from Boston in 1872, St. Peter’s Church — and ownership of the cemetery — came along. But in 1904, Pope Pius X created the Diocese of Fall River, which included Barnstable County, and the Bishop of Fall River continues to own these 12 acres.
Renovations of the cemetery were begun in 1952 by Msgr. Leo J. Duart (1904-1975), one year after he became pastor at St. Peter’s. Father Duart also bequeathed money for the construction of the cemetery chapel, which opened in 1976, a year after his death. He is buried near the chapel, by a sculptural scene of Calvary. The money to purchase this marble tableau — artist uncredited — was provided in the will of the Rev. Manuel C. Terra, who was the pastor here from 1893 to 1924. The work was blessed by Father Terra’s successor, the Rev. John A. Silvia, in October 1934.
St. Peter’s Cemetery. [2012, Dunlap]
St. Peter’s Cemetery. [2010, Dunlap]
St. Peter’s Cemetery. [2018 and 2013, Dunlap]
The chapel and Calvary. [2009, Dunlap]
The Calvary was blessed in 1934. [2012 and 2008, Dunlap]
The Rev. Manuel C. Terra provided for the Calvary in his will. [2012, Dunlap]
124 Alden Street on the Town Map, showing property lines.
Also at this address
• Msgr. Leo J. Duart (1904-1975)
Find a Grave Memorial No. 91283463.
Profiled in the Provincetown Encyclopedia:
¶ Last updated on 25 April 2015.