Reclaiming the Grounds of The Daniel Davisson DAR Cemetery

In this post we would like to give an overview of the clean up and care efforts at the Daniel Davisson DAR Cemetery since 2015. There will be a more in depth historical account of this cemetery at a later date. Thank you for taking a few minutes to read and view the photographs detailing the progress and developments over the past three years.

In The Summer Of 2015

The City of Clarksburg laid the groundwork for an organization to step in and assist the Daniel Davisson Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution with caring for the grounds of the Daniel Davisson DAR Cemetery.

Read more about their initial clean up here

Mowing Season 2016

Mike Starkey continued to mow the grounds and maintain the work that the City had put forth. Mike had assumed primary grounds-keeping responsibilities of the effort that would eventually become the Historic Clarksburg WV Cemetery Preservation Alliance while Shaun Jedju sought equipment and worked on the legalities of forming the organization.

 

Mowing Season 2017

Shaun Jedju resumed primary grounds-keeping responsibilities from Mike Starkey. Mike had found a demanding full time job in his profession and no longer had the flexibility to volunteer his time with mowing and other grounds-keeping work.

During this time Kevin Hammons, a local neighbor of the Former IOOF Cemetery, offered to assist with grounds-keeping efforts during his free time. The combined efforts of Kevin, Shaun, and other volunteers resulted in the grounds at both the Former IOOF Cemetery and the Daniel Davisson DAR Cemetery being well maintained.

This created an opportunity to clear the overgrowth along the rear of the Daniel Davisson Cemetery’s original boundary (area outlined in yellow in the aerial image).

Over time small trees and other foliage had grown along the rear fence line and expanded approximately 6 ft (and in certain areas up to 10 ft) outwards from the fence line.

Fall of 2017

Most of the dense over growth along the rear boundaries was cut back and the resulting branches, small trees, vines, and other natural debris was added to a central pile from a prior effort. Plans were made to remove this debris at a later time.

2018 Prior to Mowing Season

Youth and Staff from the Harrison County Youth Reporting Center were instrumental with the removal of the central brush pile and the other smaller brush piles laid out in the perimeter of the cemetery. They relocated the pile to an area accessible by the City of Clarksburg. The City picked up this natural waste and transported it to the City Compost Facility.

 

The Goal

Statistics have shown that increasing visibility into known trouble spots by removing obstructions such as overgrowth and litter reduces the draw for drug use, prostitution, vagrancy, and other minor criminal offenses.

Reducing these nuisance activities is key to providing a safer environment for visitors to be able to pay their respects to those buried at this cemetery.

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