From the Greenfield Historical Society – Old Burying Ground Preservation Work Session – Sunday, May 5 beginning at 9:00a.m.

The Greenfield Historical Society in historic Greenfield, Highland County, Ohio has announced that its first preservation session at the Old Burying Ground for the 2019 season is scheduled for Sunday, May 5th, beginning at 9:00 a.m. 

This dedicated group of volunteers will be embarking on its 6th year with its hands-on work cleaning, repairing, and re-setting all of the various types of gravestones and monuments that mark the grave sites at this unique pioneer Ohio cemetery.  

 As in the past, like-minded volunteers are welcome to join them!

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➠John King is the coordinator of the Old Burying Ground work sessions,

and he can be contacted at: 

jfking@earthlink.net

 

 

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Halloween was more than Ghosts & Goblins in Greenfield! Recapping the October 31st Old Burying Ground work session

John King and Scott Andersen were undaunted by the threat of rain on the last day of October, 2018 to proceed and conduct a work session where over a dozen gravestones were repaired and restored by them. 

Below are ‘sneak peek’ photos which illustrate the type of  preservation work that John and Scott, and other volunteers from the Greenfield Historical Society, have undertaken throughout their 5-year total restoration project of Greenfield Ohio’s earliest burial ground.  

The historic cemetery is adjacent to the historic Travellers Rest. 

 

Above composite photo courtesy of the 

Greenfield Historical Society

October 31, 2018 work session

Old Burying Ground – Greenfield

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From the Greenfield Historical Society’s web page

for the October 31, 2018 “OBG” work session:

“Volunteer Session – October 31, 2018”

“Halloween turned out to be another productive morning at the OBG. Although it looked like rain would drown us out, we managed to work on over a dozen stones before quitting just minutes before rains came. 

Scott Andersen and John King leveled and straightened tombstones and planned for the next area to address in the cemetery. Venus Andersen stopped by to offer encouragement and bring us soft drinks. This might have been the last session for the year, but maybe with a break in weather later in November or December we might be able to do some more work in 2018. This was probably one of the more productive years at the cemetery! 

Many thanks to ALL the volunteers who help throughout the years making this a very successful project.”

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Old Burying Ground Restoration Project  

Photos below from the June 9th, 2018

Old Burying Ground Work Session:

Above – Left to Right:  

John King, Jackie Doles, 

and Michael Lee Anderson

June 9, 2018

Photo belong is a scene from

the June 9, 2018 work session

Check out the Past Events Page

for “OBG Preservation” to

view the Recaps and photos 

of each of the work sessions

at the Old Burying Ground

since 2014! 

Be sure and check out!:

The Old Burying Ground in Greenfield

on “Find A Grave”

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25 new memorials have been added

by Scott Andersen in the last 30 days

at the Old Burying Ground

many with grave marker photos!

Total burials at the “OBG” on “Find A Grave”

now at 801!!!   

Old Burying Ground in Greenfield volunteer work session coming up! – Reminder: Wednesday, October 3, 2018 – beginning at 8:30a.m.

If you missed joining the volunteers at the Old Burying Ground for the work session of September 30, 2018, this is a reminder that another one is scheduled for Wednesday, October 3rd starting at 8:30a.m.
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Always check the calendar on the Greenfield Historical Society’s website for upcoming events which include the “OBG” – Old Burying Ground work sessions!

To keep up to date with the latest progress made by the all-volunteer group who has been working for five years to restore the Old Burying Ground in Greenfield just click on the Past Events Section on the “A Look Back” tab found on the Greenfield Historical Society’s website.  

Next, take note of the “Tombstone Repair” and the dates of each of their work sessions thus far.  

Click on each of them to see the photographs and a recap of the type of work conducted during each of the work sessions.  

The Greenfield Historical Society volunteers are a well organized group of caring people who are well trained with cleaning, repairing, and resetting grave markers from the smallest to the largest; including the more difficult ones like the “Box Tombs” shown below.  

Spotlighting the Box Tombs of the Old Burying Ground, Greenfield, Ohio

Congratulations to Scott Andersen who has done a fantastic job of restoring these box tombs seen in this photograph.  The one on the left with its sides of individual stones is the more intricate of the two.

As we can also see, the dirt area around these box tombs has been tamped down to make it ready for grass to be planted.

We know that tombstones and monuments need grass around them to add ground support so they do not start to lean.  Without grass they can eventually topple over.

One of the big mistakes cemetery groundskeepers make is to over-weedwhack around a gravestone, leaving a large circle of just dirt around it.

As we can see from the markers sitting in slotted bases and some installed directly into the ground, the grass around them not only looks good, but is helping to keep them upright.

Restoration work at The Old Burying Ground is now in its fifth year!  Almost monthly during the Spring and Summer months organized day-long work sessions are held to revitalize this early Ohio cemetery.  Improvements come one grave marker at a time as the dedicated volunteers work carefully row by row.  The transformation has been phenomenal!  Indeed the volunteers of the Greenfield Historical Society, and others who have so kindly volunteered with them, have much to be proud of!

The results of their work now sit impressively right in front of their eyes.  It is a treat to visit the  “OBG” – and to view the photographs showing all of their progress!

The Greenfield Historical Society

Old Burying Ground Project Summary

A Look Back at Past Events – Tombstone Repair

Old Burying Ground,Greenfield, Highland County, Ohio – May 15, 2018 – Starting at 9:00A.M. – Until? – The Next Hands-On Cemetery Preservation Project Session Conducted by The Greenfield Historical Society

Reminder:  The Next Volunteer Hands-On Cemetery Preservation Work Session at Greenfield’s earliest cemetery, The Old Burying Ground, will be coming up on Tuesday, May 15th, 2018 beginning at 9:00a.m.  — it is a “stay as long as you can environment”.

The Old Burying Ground’s restoration/preservation efforts are now in their 5th year…and still going strong!!  

 

Many of the historical society’s volunteers, namely, John King, Scott and Venus Andersen, Harold Schmidt, and Gloria Losey, have been volunteering since the beginning.  Others have also joined them over the past years, including, Michael  Lee Anderson and Jackie Doles, who are regulars as well.  

 

You won’t find a more dedicated, and experienced group of caring individuals who are working to restore an early Ohio cemetery than these volunteers!   

 Also, be sure to check out the link below with details and photographs taken at the previous work session on May 8th.:

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“Volunteer Session – May 8, 2018”

“What a beautiful day for work in the cemetery! We were able to realign more stones, repair a couple broken stones, clean some stones, and using the hoist, lift and reset a few of the heavier stones. Joining in were Scott Andersen, John King, Jackie Doles, Mike Anderson, Gloria Losey and her sister Karen, Harold Schmidt, and Avery Applegate (who came from Hillsboro to help).”

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****How Can YOU Help?****

🔻🔻

“Join us for an upcoming work session. You can stay as long as you like. We will help you get started if you have not participated previously. Tasks range from cleaning stones, straightening stones, recording information, etc. We post our scheduled sessions on the GHS website calendar

 For further details, or to sign up to participate in the next volunteer work session, contact John King, of the Greenfield History Society at:  
 jfking@earthlink.net.

The Old Burying Ground on “Find A Grave”

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The Old Burying Ground’s Ohio Historic Inventory # HIG-00314-02 with the Ohio History Connection’s Preservation Office.

August 2, 2016 Update from Sheep Pen Cemetery: William Irwin, Sr.’s Grave Marker Restored and Reset in Its Original Stone Base

At rural Sheep Pen Cemetery there is a rather plain looking white marble tablet gravestone that was left to lean against a large slow sinking table top slab that holds the marker made for Maria Dick.  This scene had been undisturbed for years that sadly turned into decades, that is until now.  


In 1858, the flat topped gravestone was carved and installed to mark the final resting place of William R. Irwin, Sr. who came to America from Ireland in 1798.  His life story was well written up in the book:  “History of Ross and Highland Counties, Ohio.”  

William and his wife, Margaret McCormick Irwin, were the parents of 11 children; 10 of whom lived to adulthood.  The children lived out their lives and made their own mark in their community and for some, far beyond it. 

William and Margaret Irwin are an example of how couples (like countless others who rest in peace at so many of Ohio’s early burial grounds that have now been deemed to be inactive or even abandoned) whose children became builders in their communities through service as teachers, doctors, lawyers, shopkeepers, and farmers – and at professions no longer in existence.  

Thankfully, through biographical information and drawings published in 1880s era county history books, (and Ohio has several of them!), we are privileged to learn more details of the generations of ancestors, who during their lifetimes, fulfilled the dreams of their pioneer parents.  

Living descendants may not always be aware of the stories of the lives led by their great or great-great grandparents who are now buried in grave sites with sunken or unreadable gravestones.

However, there is renewed hope because of a resurgent interest to restore, and in some cases even unearth, gravestones at cemeteries like Sheep Pen. 

The interest has become a concerted effort through volunteers working independently and in like-minded groups.  

Thus, I would like to thank the dedicated group of volunteers of the Greenfield Historical Society !  Since 2014 they have worked together to clean, repair, straighten up, and reset markers, like those of William Irwin, Sr.,  at the Old Burying Ground in Greenfield.  They have inspired new folks who desire to learn and participate to come and join them. 

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Extending my personal thanks to Scott and Venus Andersen for their immeasurable contributions at Sheep Pen Cemetery to make it the cemetery it is today.  They have also volunteered and contributed regularly at the Old Burying Ground since the work sessions began.  

Thanking also John King of the Greenfield Historical Society who has done so much of the physical digging work that has led to discoveries of bases, and fragments of gravestones that were needed to make one whole again.  All this work that has become the remaking of a cemetery is indeed utterly remarkable!  Everyone who contributes is appreciated!  

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It is my pleasure to share Scott Andersen’s three photographs’s below of the William Irwin, Sr. gravestone, before, during, and after it was put back where it belongs at Sheep Pen Cemetery.: