LOOKING AHEAD TO 2021 WITH A LOOK BACK AT ALL OUR ACCOMPLISHEMENTS IN 2020
Despite the virus and the restrictions that were placed upon us, our dedicated and loyal volunteers managed to do an amazing job in supporting the goals of our non-profit organization in caring for the cemetery.
Grounds and Cemetery Maintenance - Thanks to our volunteers, those from other organizations and the community, we were able to host two successful Community Clean-up Days, one on May 22, and the other on October 20, 2020. Scouts from Jacksonville Troop 17 and Jacksonville Pack 3017. along with parents and siblings helped to clean-up the grounds on October 24, 2020. Additional time was spent on cleaning and maintaining the Interpretive Panels, Interpretive Center and the Kiosk Map and Pavilion, as well as restocking cemetery brochures. A group of volunteers also placed over 400 flags for Memorial Day and removed them following Veterans Day. Approximately 312 hours of volunteer time went into helping to care for the cemetery grounds.
Note: Please check our Events Page for the 2021 Community Clean-up dates and details.
Marker Restoration - Our large restoration project this past year, was the Fitts' block in the Masonic Section of the cemetery. We actually began the project in the winter of 2019, with work being completed by July 2020. It was a major under taking and now the restored block looks much like it did when it was originally constructed. In addition, some smaller projects, 29 headstones and memorial markers were also worked on. A total of 227:30 volunteer hours were contributed to cemetery restoration work. If you would be interested in learning and helping us with this type of volunteer work, let us know at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Marker Cleaning Workshops - As a result of the virus and then the summer wild fires that we faced this past year, we were only able to host a total of 4 workshops in 2020. Some how our volunteers made up for any lost time and managed to clean a total of 175 head stones and monuments while contributing 211:30 hours. Since these workshops began in 2013, volunteers have cleaned 955 markers and contributed 1,370 volunteer hours. A very impressive endeavor and appreciated even more so, as you walk the grounds
Note: Be sure to check our Events Page for Workshop dates for 2021.
Honoring our Veterans - Each year the Friends of Jacksonville's Historic Cemetery purchase flags to be placed on each grave site of the Veterans who rest within our cemetery. Volunteers place the flags just before Memorial Day and then remove them in November following Veterans Day. There are over 400 Veterans resting within the cemetery grounds.
Note: Volunteer hours are included under Grounds and Cemetery Maintenance.
History Events and Tours - Needless to say the pandemic resulted in our having to cancel all of our tours and History Events, such as History Saturday in the Cemetery and Meet the Pioneers. We are hoping to be able to offer these programs this year. We will continue to monitor the situation and go by the direction and guidelines of our Public Health Officials and the Governor.
Note: See our Meet the Pioneers and Events Page for 2021 dates and details.
Additional Projects in 2020
New Cemetery Kiosk Map - We continued working on our Cemetery Kiosk project by placing a new detailed block map under the pavilion next to the Sexton's Tool House and the Interpretive Center. The new map, along with the individual block numbered signs that were placed in the in the City section in 2019, greatly assist visitors in locating individual grave sites. This year we will be adding individual block numbered signs in the I.O.O.F., Masonic, and the Improved and Independent Order of Red Men sections of the cemetery. The map was designed by Benchmark Maps of Medford and the stand that holds the map was designed and built by Bryan Pancheau. It was fashioned after the one that stands in the Recoleta Cemetery in Buenos Aires, where Eva Peron is interred.
Friends of Jacksonville's Historic Cemetery