Stewardship in the 20th-century

The Ancient Burying Ground - Hartford's Oldest Historic Site

In the following decades efforts were made to preserve specific stones, with varying degrees of success. Connecticut chapters of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) continue their involvement and support to the present day. The Society of the Descendants of the Founders of Hartford, established in 1931, formed an Ancient Burying Ground Committee to address some of the needs.

Founders Monument - photo of East side of obelisk inscribed with names of Hartford's founders

One of the most prominent, projects of this initiative was the replacement in 1986 of the Founders Monument, which had deteriorated severely, with a new obelisk of solid pink granite from Stony Creek, Connecticut, to commemorate Hartford’s 350th anniversary.

(East side of the Founder’s Monument shown here)

In 1987 the Ancient Burying Ground Association, Inc., a private, non-profit group, was created in order to move forward with the on-going conservation, preservation, and maintenance program that has cost more than $1 million to date. The Ancient Burying Ground has been dramatically improved as a site, while cutting-edge knowledge and techniques have been used to clean, preserve, or replicate more than 100 gravestones.

Conservation is the activity of cleaning gravestones of biological growth, straightening leaning gravestones, resetting gravestones with a better supporting mixture of pea stone and sand to help with drainage, and other stewardship activities to preserve this historical site for the decades and centuries ahead.

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