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Ogdensburgh Cemetery stones will be fixed

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OGDENSBURG — Fifty dangerously leaning gravestones are slated for repair this summer in the Ogdensburgh Cemetery along Route 812.

The Ogdensburgh Cemetery Association applied last week for state grant money to repair the stones, which pose a hazard to visitors.

“It’s also an aesthetic issue,” cemetery association President Arthur Hastings said Thursday. “But these gravesites are an immediate problem. These are not monuments that are laying on the ground. These are monuments that are in danger of falling over and could potentially hurt someone.”

The association applied for an estimated $2,800 through the state Department of State’s Division of Cemeteries last week. Mr. Hastings said he hopes to hear before the summer whether the application was successful so the association may begin working on the stones.

The association in December had published the list of deteriorating gravesites in hopes that family members could help contribute to the cost of repairing stones. Most of the stones in need of repair date to before 1900.

Names on those graves are Northrop, Christiana/Stephens, Dillingham/Wright, Farnsworth, Kelly, Butler, Ranney, Baldwin, Wheelock, Ralph, Caswell/Plumsteel, Day, Bellinger, Purvis, Scott, McRoberts, Chapin, Miller, Lowry, Brown, Kellogg, Barney, Woods, Shannon, Durgan, Bloodough/Scott, Mott, Armstrong, Cameron, Galbrath, Denny, Badlam, Christy, Orr, Dorgan, Haslers/Wright, Robson, Gibson, Gravelle, Miller and Hoag.

Once the first round of gravestones is restored, the association hopes to apply for more funding next year. Mr. Hastings said he doesn’t know the total number of sites that need to be repaired, but much of the historic cemetery is “in bad shape.”

The public cemetery relies on donations to maintain its grounds and stones. The association will begin its annual letter-writing fundraising campaign May 1. Proceeds from last year’s campaign — approximately $5,000 — will be used to level the cemetery’s gravel roads this summer.

St. Lawrence NYSARC’s Seaway Industries will be performing work on the cemetery the first week in May, when the association will hold a work day for volunteers to clean around plots.

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