The Perryman Cemetery is located at about 32nd and Utica. It belonged to the Perryman family who were vital members of Tulsa's early history.
The imposing home/ranch headquarters for Lewis’ ranch was situated north of East 33rd Street and Rockford Avenue and included a trading post that operated successfully up until the Civil War.
On March 25, 1879, Josiah Chouteau Perryman oversaw the beginning of official postal service in Tulsa, serving as postmaster for the 200 or-so residents in brother George Beecher Perryman’s ranch house, just north of present day East 41st Street.
George was married to a colorful character, one Rachel Perryman affectionately known by friends and family simply as “Aunt Rachel.” Although there is some discrepancy as to her exact date of birth—a 1927 Tulsa World article dates her birth to 1831, though family sources record a date in April of 1846—there is no doubt Rachel lived a long and interesting life.
Aunt Rachel was known for her generosity and fondness for visitors, especially young children. When chiefs would gather in Okmulgee for peace councils, they were often invited back to Aunt Rachel’s to celebrate with food and drink. She, in fact, kept a well-stocked larder for her myriad unexpected guests, who would more than likely end up staying (at Aunt Rachel’s insistence, of course) for days on end.
She was herself mother to seven children, though she raised, fed and cared for some 30 others, each of which she put through college and helped them later to establish businesses.
Her husband George’s vast property stretched from the Cherokee line north to Wagoner, and the whitewashed farmhouse/post office/trading post he owned soon became known to those it served as the “Perryman White House,” with Aunt Rachel as it’s unofficial First Lady.
It was around this same time that the Perryman’s began using the small plat of land near what is now East 32nd Street and Utica Avenue as a family cemetery. Thirty-six gravestones still remain, identifying various members of the Perryman family (including Josiah and George) and a few friends.
The last interment was done in 1941 (one William Shirk), though it is impossible to tell exactly how many persons were actually buried in the cemetery since the graveyard’s original boundaries extended well beyond today’s fenced-in, corner lot. Because the land was communally owned by the Creek Indians, burials were done “around,” and consequently no exact record exists of the location of many family graves.
Fueled by complaining neighbors and a lack of ability to maintain the property, the cemetery was almost eliminated in 1958 with a petition that would have authorized the removal of the 42 known bodies buried there, declaring the 150-by-150 foot plot a “nuisance and health hazard.”
The cemetery’s maintenance soon became the responsibility of the Tulsa Historical Society, who through private funding refurbished the landmark, adding a fence, a historical marker and landscaping.
Arthur Perryman, grandson of Lewis, built a house about 1900 on the southwest corner of East 31st Street and Utica Avenue, where he lived with his wife Daisy and raised his sons Philip Ward, William Thomas and Robert.
At the time when the Perryman family was living in the house, the cemetery’s boundaries extended to the south end of their lot and was owned and maintained by George, the son of the George who owned the first post office.
The family’s many achievements ultimately helped shape not only the great city of Tulsa, but the neighboring Muskogee Nation as well. The innovative and strong-willed family helped nurture the roots of Tulsa during a time when its future as a big city (let alone the oil capital of the world) was nothing more than a pipe dream." Link