SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Work continues to clear out years of neglect in the Evergreen Cemetery and now the contractor needs the public’s help.
Clearing the decades of vegetation growth inside the evergreen cemetery, a privately owned, historically African American cemetery reveals a number of overturned headstones. Some are the result of the work to clear out vegetation, but many are due to years of neglect and illegal dumping.
The contractor doing the work on the behalf of the city, Beers Housing, hopes for some vital input. Field Manager Jason Jones says his crew is not sure where some of the overturned headstones here plans to fix all the headstones, but they are not sure about matching some headstones to their proper gravesite.
“Some of them we’re finding that they’re 10 – 15 feet away from the graves, so we need to figure out where these go so that we can get them back in the right spot,” Jones said. “We’re hoping we can get some family members out here next week and help us find some of these gravesites.”
This is a one-time cleaning contract awarded by the City of Savannah as they pay out $90,000 to help the hundreds of families regain access to their loved one’s final resting places. The small volunteer group, Friends and Family of Evergreen Cemetery, has been tackling the task for years and they welcome the municipal assistance, but they are now urgently looking to organize more volunteers to maintain the cemetery.
With enough volunteers, they hope to prevent the overgrowth from returning. If you’d like to help you can call Reverend Augustus Johnson at (912)-398-5409 or Larry Copeland at (912)-596-1391.