Why Western Cemetery needs you.
Western Cemetery, the second oldest burial ground in Portland, has become frequented, now during Covid, by more and more people for more and more reasons: you enjoy quiet conversations with friends, you jog through embracing views of the harbor and the handsome houses, you cross-country ski around it, you nature-bathe among the pitch pines and maples, you attend outdoor classes in its fresh air, you delight in learning more about the city’s history, you visit graves of your forebears.
At the same time, sadly, the cemetery remains widely known for the disrepair and declining condition of many of its hundreds of grave markers. These many stones desperately need cleaning, repair, conservation, and study. Now, a few of us neighbors have undertaken leadership roles and training to help restore Western Cemetery. You can join us in this effort.
Your help is warranted because:
- This revived group, Stewards of Western Cemetery, collaborating with Portland city officials, will be developing plans for new walkways, managing vegetation, creating signage, providing water, constructing a tool house, publicizing the work, doing research, and leading tours, all of which could use your support and involvement, if you are interested.
- Meanwhile, the City of Portland has new, energetic, and experienced leadership for Western and other historic cemeteries.
- The increased use of the cemetery should be made more comfortable and more inviting as soon as possible.
- Volunteers from the West End and Western Prom neighborhoods are now available to help train and guide you in these cemetery-wide activities.
- Your donation will be a deductible charitable contribution.
In short, the time is now to counter decades of deterioration and to revive and restore a sense for tomorrow’s visitors that this historic cemetery is receiving the careful, continuing attention it deserves.
Despite all you already do, we hope you’ll consider contributing your time, money, thought, or effort to this overdue and exciting effort to enhance this historic, park-like jewel.
How you can participate.
If interested, send your emails to: StewardsWesternCemetery@gmail.com
Send your mail to: Stewards of Western Cemetery,
622 Congress Street STE 9998 # 5267, Portland, ME 04101-3368
Send your donation checks to:
Greater Portland Landmarks, 93 High St., Portland, ME 04101
Memo: For Stewards of Western Cemetery.
To give online: https://www.portlandlandmarks.org/support
On the donation page, in the “Additional Comment” box, add the notation, “For Stewards of Western Cemetery.”