Summer is upon us, and we are excited to see the new Sugar Maples and Crab Apple Trees in the Old Village Cemetery blooming along Village Avenue.
Lots of improvements have taken place in the Cemetery as the restoration moves ahead under the direction of Joe Flanagan, Director of the Dedham DPW, and the Dedham Village Preservation Association, Inc. The ironwork of the Howe plot (AX132 on the Town map of the Cemetery) has been replicated and installed by Wovensteel, Inc., of East Boston, manufacturer of distinctive ironwork. The Howe plot was the most seriously distressed grave in the OVC, involving the removal of invasive trees, foundation issues, and the repair and replication of ironwork. The work was paid for in part by a generous grant from the Dedham Savings Community Foundation.
Work to restore the Old Village Cemetery continues with the installation of replicated ironwork for the Howe plot on Village Avenue. More plots are scheduled for restoration this year.
Left to right: Said Naciri, lead welder for Wovensteel, Inc. of East Boston; Ted Russell, President of the DVPA, Inc.; Marie Louise Kehoe, Chairman of the OVC Restoration Committee; Daniel Gebrenedhin, fabricator; José Gutierrez, shop foreman; and Joe Flanagan, Director of the Dedham DPW.
Our agenda is to continue to clean and repair gravestones, and to reclaim endangered sites, using existing materials wherever possible. Our feeling is that this is an ancient cemetery, and part of its charm and authenticity is its weathered, centuries-old look. Our goal is to ensure that it is safe for the many tourists that visit every year, and that its rich Dedham history is preserved.
As the year ends and Giving Tuesday is today, please consider a gift to the Dedham Village Preservation Association on behalf of the Old Village Cemetery Restoration under the direction of Marie Louise Kehoe and her Committee, and Joe Flanagan, Director of the Dedham DPW.
We’re hoping to complete the work in 2022 and build an endowment to ensure that the Old Village Cemetery, one of the most important Colonial burial grounds in America, will be maintained in perpetuity. We need your help — please dig deep and thank you.
To donate, please fill out the form on our donation page, or mail to Dedham Village Preservation Association, Inc., POB 1037, Dedham, MA 02027
I hope that you have had the opportunity to walk past the Old Village Cemetery over the Summer and Fall and have observed the wondrous transformation that Joe Flanagan and his crew have wrought in this ancient and historic place that features so prominently in Dedham history.
The bier path has a splendid new gravel surface (that still needs a few tweaks) extending from the beautifully restored main gate, the handiwork of Bob Gillette and Stephen Black of the Dedham DPW, past the replicated ironwork of the Richard’s plot, to the no. 10 crypt, containing the remains of Elihu Onion, one of 104 Revolutionary War Veterans buried or cenotaphed in the OVC. David Ray and Kevin Duffy continue to scrub away the dirt and grime of centuries from stones marking the remains of ancient Dedham families. Additionally, they have been able to recover lost stones from deep underground and return them to their original bases.
If you have visited St. Paul’s enticing new kid-centric playground, you will see that the children have safe passage via a path bordered by appropriate new trees and plantings, a cooperative effort by the Church, the DPW, and the DVPA, Inc.
Sadly, the second Halloween Gala Fundraiser, scheduled for this October, has been cancelled because we want to keep our revelers safe, and, it did not seem appropriate at a time when everyone is struggling. Last year’s gala was a fun evening and we look forward to putting another good scare into Dedham next Halloween. In the meantime, we are working on a matching grant fund raiser, made possible by generous benefactors, that we hope will appeal to end of the year donors.
This year has seen the Halvorsan Design Partnership Plan of 2018 for the OVC begin to come to life on schedule despite a very difficult year for everyone. We are grateful to the many workers and volunteers who have made this possible, and to our loyal supporters, and, as the season ends, we are already excited about plans for 2021.
Video: Old Village Cemetery – A Brief History – 2017-2020
The Dedham Village Preservation Assoc., Inc. (501(c)3) and the Town of Dedham gratefully thank all the generous donors who are helping us restore the Old Village Cemetery, one of America’s oldest and most significant Colonial burial grounds. With your help, we are making great progress!
Happy Holidays, and wishing you a healthy and productive 2020.
Marie Louise Kehoe, Chairman Joseph Flanagan, Director, Dedham DPW
like to personally thank you for your continued support of Dedham’s Old Village
Cemetery. Renovation is well underway with the continued cleaning of
headstones, removal of dead or overgrown trees, and the installation of
handsome new gates at the entrance on Village Avenue. If you haven’t been by
the cemetery recently, I’d encourage you to do so, though there is much work
yet to be done.
bringing Dedham’s history back to life.
on Giving Tuesday, a national day of giving that kicks off the charitable
season, I’d like to ask that you make a gift of any size to the Old Village
ambitious plans to return the cemetery to its former glory, ensuring that it
will continue to be a treasured historic landmark in Dedham – today and in
perpetuity. We can do this with your help!
We are very excited to announce that we think that we have finally reached the point in our program when we can begin to think about joining the many enjoyable fund- raising events that dot the annual Dedham social calendar with the intent of putting the “fun” in funding. Our Halloween themed “Gravedigger’s Gala” (patterned after a very successful similar event held annually for many years in Philadelphia) will be held at the Endicott Estate on East Street, Friday, October 25th from 7-11PM, and repeated annually, we hope, to build the endowment for the perpetual care of the Old Village Cemetery. Please hold the date!
The evening will feature a live (dead) auction with celebrity auctioneer, Michael Grogan, music, catering by Creative Entertainment, an open bar, and a mortiferous signature punch appropriately called “Beyond the Grave” concocted by renowned local mixologist, Joe Flanagan, all for $75 per person. More information will be available later this summer. Guests will be limited to 200. Creative costumes are optional.
Planning the festivities will be the newly appointed Old Village Cemetery Events Committee, chaired by Darcy Lane and Maureen Joyce, with members Anne Cadigan, Nancy Clement, Tracy Driscoll, Joe Flanagan, Michele Heffernan, Mary Louise Kehoe, Jeanine Lathum, Johanna McBrien, Jonathon Briggs, and Tara Murphy.
TICKETS – Please note: Advance Ticket Option has Expired
Guests will be limited to 200.
Tickets are $80 at the door.
We will accept cash, credit at the door. If you prefer, you can purchase Gala tickets with a check made out to:
Dedham Village Preservation Association,
P.O. Box 1037, Dedham, MA 02027
The Dedham Village Preservation Association is a registered 501(c)3 and allows tax-deductible donations to the extent provided by law.
Email us if you have any questions about the ticketing process.
I’d like to personally thank you for your continued support of Dedham’s Old Village Cemetery. Renovation has begun with the cleaning of headstones, and tree work is planned in the next few weeks. If you haven’t been by the cemetery recently, I’d encourage you to do so.
Slowly, we are bringing Dedham’s history back to life.
Today, on Giving Tuesday, a national day of giving that kicks off the charitable season, I’d like to ask that you make a gift of any size to the Old Village Cemetery.
Through the efforts of Stanton Lyman, Chairman of the Dedham Historic District Commission, and Peter Damon, Old Village Cemetery Committee member, a handsome bronze plaque has been installed at the Village Avenue entrance of the Old Village Cemetery commemorating its 2006 listing on the National Register of Historic Places. The Cemetery is now officially recognized by the Federal Government as one of the Nation’s most significant historic sites.