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THANK YOU to Jeff at Baker Memorials in Lexington. The headstone for our Civil War veteran Israel Burles has been set. Jeff also reset some of the toppled headstones. We cannot thank you enough for all you have done for us. We will be scheduling a date to dedicate the new headstone.

To read more about Israel Burles, go to our “veterans” page.

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Your donation will help with repair and resetting of damaged headstones, preservation of the history, the development of a memorial area for our fifty-one veterans, repaving the road, and generally restoring this historic place. We are a non profit, so your donation is tax deductible. Thank you for your support–

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The property for Forest Grove Cemetery in Lexington, Missouri, was deeded from the City of Lexington to the “trustees for the colored people of Lexington, Missouri” on October 28, 1890. Burials began shortly after the Civil War (the oldest headstone dates to 1872). Many of those first buried at Forest Grove were born into slavery there, but as free people the scope of their labors has mirrored the times. Military veterans of domestic and foreign engagements are laid to rest among the coal miners, horsemen, smiths, farm hands, civic leaders, merchants, musicians, morticians, athletes, carpenters, cooks, domestics, barbers, educators and construction workers who made their homes in this historic river town.

The cemetery has fallen into disrepair over the last fifty or so years—overgrown with brush, headstones knocked down by vandals, a fence in desperate need of replacement….but good people around the city and beyond are acting to spruce things up at Forest Grove so it can again shine as part of our historic narrative. You can help, too!

We have already raised money for and installed a new fence and gate. But we’re not finished! We will repair and reset the damaged headstones, as well as include a memorial area complete with a flag and pieces of the old fence. Ongoing maintenance is also critical.

As you can see from the above photo, we have procured a military headstone for our Civil War veteran, Israel Burles. It has been set and we are planning a dedication. Date tbd. Future plans include repairing damaged headstones, creating a memorial area with new flagpole, upgrading the road, and planting flowers across the front of the fence (as it was in the past). We have reached our goal in raising money to purchase a headstone for Miss Eva Saunders. It will be ordered in September with a dedication planned for spring.

 

On our work day May 18 we cleaned headstones of forty-two veterans and decorated the grounds for Memorial Day.

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TAYLOR SHIRLEY

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