Potter's Field, Fairmount Cemetery

Section 90 at Fairmount Memorial Park is known as a Potter's Field. This portion of the cemetery was donated, in 1897, by Spokane County for the purpose of burying the indigent and/or unknown persons from the city and county. It is in this section that several unknown people are buried - infants and adults, alike, who were found on the city streets, in the river, or left at orphanages and other like institutions. See the stop, "The Unknowns" for more details. Additionally, several of the disinterred bodies from Spokane's first cemeteries, Spokan Falls/Hangman Creek, and Mountain View, were transferred to Fairmount's Section 90.
The history behind potters' fields is believed to extend back to biblical times, in reference to Matthew 27:3-8. This story tells of Judas Iscariot, the one who betrayed Jesus with a kiss to reveal him to the authorities. After Judas learned that Jesus was condemned to die, he was horrified and tried to return the money the high priests had given him to turn in Jesus. After tossing the money at their feet, Judas hanged himself. The priests, not wanting blood-money on their hands by using it for the Temple treasury, bought the local potter's field and turned it into a cemetery for foreigners, known as the Field of Blood. The field did not necessarily belong to an individual, but rather could have been a field of clay used for pottery.



Potter's Field Audio
Creator: Julie Y. Russell
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