Dale Cemetery Heritage Trail Reaches Completion

The Ossining Historical Cemeteries Conservancy Project Is Open for Walking or Driving

The Ossining Historic Cemeteries Conservancy (OHCC) and the Town of Ossining announced the completion of the Dale Cemetery Heritage Trail. Located in historic Dale Cemetery at 104 Havell St., the Trail has added 11 new grave markers to the previous 26, bringing the Trail to 37 plaques in all.  The grave markers tell the story of the person or family buried there, and through them the history of Ossining itself.

New grave markers include Henry Gourdine, the legendary Hudson River fisherman; the artists Theodore Pine and Eleanor Wunderlich; the prominent Foshay, Holden and Pilat families; Revolutionary War veteran James Trowbridge; schoolmaster Marlborough Churchill; two local monument makers, the O’Brien and Heuss families; and Bryan J. Johnson, whose untimely death in 2012 lead to new boating safety legislation.

They join the existing historic markers about early settlers and war veterans; doctors and politicians; shipbuilders and civic leaders; a baseball pitcher; a jazz guitarist; a famous anthropologist; and even an Arctic explorer. The Trail includes several structures made of Sing Sing marble, stone quarried at the prison.

The Heritage Trail is designed as a self-guided tour of the cemetery. Large signs at the Claremont Rd. and Marble Pl. entrances welcome visitors. Maps are available, and visitors can choose to drive or walk the Trail any day of the week.

Founded in 1851, historic Dale Cemetery is a fine example of the 19th century Rural Cemetery Movement. This “park of the dead” replaced family burying grounds and church graveyards. Its magnificent natural setting, with rolling hills and far-reaching vistas, made visiting loved ones buried there a calming stroll through nature. Picnics and concerts were commonplace.

The Dale Cemetery Heritage Trail was made possible by a generous Legislative Initiative Grant through the office of New York State Senator David Carlucci, administered through the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. It is a project of Ossining Historic Cemeteries Conservancy, a 501c(3) non-profit organization whose mission is to preserve, enhance, and share the beauty and history of Dale and Sparta Cemeteries for the benefit of future and past generations.

Dale is an active non-sectarian public cemetery. Owned by the Town of Ossining since 2004, Dale Cemetery was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2013.

For more information, visit the OHCC on Facebook or at their new website, ossininghistoriccemeteries.org.

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