Guidelines for Preservation Planning for Historic Burial Grounds and Cemeteries
St. Paul's United Preservation Sign
St. Paul's United Preservation Sign

The preservation of historic burial grounds and cemeteries must involve all components of a site from maps and written records to the landscape and the gravestones.  Three basic steps should be undertaken to prepare for preservation planning options: Data Gathering and Documentation, Site Survey and Condition Assessment, Grave Marker Inventory and Condition Assessment. Once the historic significance and condition of a site is understood and the landscape and grave marker materials and conditions are evaluated, a preservation philosophy can be considered and options for preservation prioritized into a Preservation Plan. Carrying out any preservation or conservation of headstones and memorials can cost money. Developing a preservation master plan to serve as a framework and timeline for phased preservation projects, decision making, fundraising, and appropriate historic interpretation will be a worthwhile effort. Establishing Preservation Priorities is an important method for evaluating projects and their outcome before you begin. Priority Levels are suggested for various tasks.