project leader
Michelle D
location
6901 Woodland Avenue
(Central)
latest update rss
No updates yet.

the project

Woodland Cemetery was the first site in the City of Cleveland to become a member of the National Park Service Underground Railroad Network to Freedom by nominating Sara Lucy Bagby Johnson, Hiram Wilson, John Brown and Edward Wade.  This has inspired us to do additional research of those residing in the cemetery who were part of the history of the Underground Railroad (UGRR).  We have learned, while creating a cemetery tour guide of the Underground Railroad residents in Woodland Cemetery, that eight are in undocumented graves and the Vosburgh monument has toppled over and needs to be fixed.

Absence of evidence is NOT evidence of absence.  As with much of Black History being left out of textbooks, lack of headstones for LEADERS of the Underground Railroad means that people doing self-guided tours will never find these people, who sacrificed life and property to help Freedom Seekers.  We want to correct this absence of headstones so graves can be documented and their stories will be told with our UGRR cemetery tour guides.  We also seek donations to restore the George Vosburgh monument (he is one of only 2 Black leaders of the Underground Railroad with a memorial).

It is important to provide a physical remembrance to tell their stories to educate current and future visitors and tourists to this historic cemetery. Once their resting place can be found, the educational possibilities are limitless.  History is in your own backyard Clevelanders.

the steps

Once funding is received we will purchase the eight headstones and have the Vosburgh monument restored in time for us to plan Underground Railroad Tours to the public and organizations.  It is disappointing to talk about the history of the UGRR and there is only a patch of grass. Lack of a physical presence of headstones can lead to absence of attention to their significance and sacrifices. 

We also plan to add the information on the additional people we have discovered in our research to the data base at the National Park Service Underground Railroad Network to Freedom. 

why we're doing it

Woodland Cemetery was the first site in the City of Cleveland to become a member of the National Park Service Underground Railroad Network to Freedom by nominating Sara Lucy Bagby Johnson, Hiram Wilson, John Brown and Edward Wade.  This has inspired us to do additional research of those residing in the cemetery who were part of the history of the Underground Railroad.  We have learned, while creating a cemetery tour guide of the Underground Railroad residents in Woodland Cemetery, that eight are in undocumented graves and the Vosburgh monument has toppled over and needs fixed.

Being located in the Central neighborhood, we are educators. We document and preserve history in stone so others can share the history that exists in our own back yard.  Over 85,000 residents of Woodland Cemetery are part of this city's past.  Our focus at this time is those activists of the UGRR, who have no physical presence to document the past.

budget

8 headstones at $750 ea 

Restoration of Vosburgh monument $800

Misc costs/inflation $400

 



TOTAL PROJECT FUNDING NEEDED $7,200
ioby Fiscal Sponsorship Fee (5%) N/A
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%)
(Donation processing fee does not apply to match funding.)
$223
TOTAL TO RAISE= $7,423

Please note, fees are estimated here and final numbers may change based on the final amount raised.

updates

Sorry, but this project doesn't have any updates yet.

photos

This is where photos will go once we build flickr integration

donors

  • Gravestones for Betty Gould and Maria Ambush
  • Wrean Fiebig
  • Barbara E.
  • Mary R.
  • Elise Y.
  • Dr. Ronnie Dunn