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Effort underway to restore two Black cemeteries

Posted at 6:51 PM, Feb 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-08 18:51:31-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- This Black History Month, two groups of volunteers are working to restore two cemeteries that serve as a resting place for people who faced segregation and racial violence.

The Enrichmond Foundation is partnering with Howard Wellman Conservation to create a preservation plan for the historic Evergreen and East End cemeteries in Richmond and Henrico County.

Howard Wellman is well known in the preservation industry and brings 21 years of the highest and best experience as a conservator to the project.

“We are honored that Howard Wellman has joined our project to preserve and protect these historic burial grounds,” said John Sydnor, Enrichmond Foundation Executive Director. “His experience is extensive and the plans he creates will be the preservation guides for our work moving forward.”

The plan will be used as a guide for assessing and rehabilitating thousands of monuments, wrought ironwork, and headstones. This plan will also identify what skill sets and training are needed for volunteers and staff before implementing work on the grounds.

The step-by-step guide is expected to be completed by the end of the month and then will be reviewed by the Historic Evergreen Cemetery Executive Planning and Review Team.

Volunteers with Enrichmond have spent years cleaning and restoring these historically black cemeteries. The goal is make them a beautiful place for Richmonders to visit and pay their respects.