A summer visit to Evergreen Cemetery reinforces the scale of the effort necessary to reclaim from the forest even a portion of the burial ground.
Dating from 1891, Evergreen Cemetery is the final resting place of notable African-American Richmonders such as Maggie L. Walker, John Mitchell, Jr., and Rev.J.Andrew Bowler. Encompassing maybe 60 acres, the vast majority of the cemetery is all but lost to weed trees, underbrush, and creeping vines. The most recent burials in the historic section of the cemetery date from the 1970s, with a portion of the cemetery still in use for new internments.
A Families and Friends group on Yahoo has been the organizing point for a handful of volunteers that have been working doggedly to clean and maintain portions of the privately-owned cemetery.
Michael Paul Williams Letâ€™s right sad state of cemeteries in today’s RTD revisits Evergreen some 2 1/2 years after the last big media splash and draws a line between the decay of Evergreen and the recent news from Chicago’s Burr Oak Cemetery.