Cemetery restoration projects are not uncommon for many Scouts who seek the rank of Eagle Scout. Many Scouts discover that the local cemetery offers an opportunity to learn about town history through the beautification of the grounds and the restoration of the graves of those who are buried there.
Jake H. is one such Scout who wanted to focus his Eagle Scout project on completing some restoration work on one of his town’s cemeteries. Yet, when he first selected the restoration project, little did he know that it would offer a window into his own family history.
Garlinghouse Cemetery is one of seven cemeteries located in the community of Naples, New York. It is small, and many of its fallen, broken, and leaning headstones are in need of restoration, but the cemetery offers rich historical context for the community. It serves as the final resting place for some of the earliest settlers to the area, and Civil War veterans are also buried there.
As Jake was in the process of surveying the cemetery and developing the restoration plans for it, his mother was working on a project of her own, tracing the family’s genealogy. As she searched through family history, she stumbled upon information that a few of the family’s ancestors are actually buried in Garlinghouse Cemetery, a fact that came as a surprise to Jake.
“It was a complete coincidence that we discovered the family connection to the cemetery,” Jake told the Daily Messenger. “We had no idea we had generations-old roots in Naples.”
To see more details on Jake’s project, be sure to read the full article in the Daily Messenger.
To learn more about the positive impact that Scouting can have on young people like Jake, be sure to check out this article on the recent Tufts study, and watch this video: