Preservation of Lincoln and Springfield’s History
The internment records of Lincolns’ burials need to be restored and preserved. The simple, one-inch-thick book is the first volume of internment records beginning in 1858 at Oak Ridge, the second most visited cemetery In the United States due to its most famous internments. The second volume contains the record of Mary Lincoln’s 1882 funeral at the cemetery, among many others. Both books have deteriorated over time. As Director of Oak Ridge Cemetery, Mike Lelys, stated, “Time has not been kind to them after 150 years of people looking at the books. If nothing is done, they will deteriorate to the point of not being readable.”
There is more to it than our Country’s favorite son, the history of Springfield is also within the roughly 200 plus pages this effort will preserve. Preservation costs include the restoration of the two books, an archival display case and facsimile copies of the documents for educational viewing.
Total restoration cost: $40,000
A GoFundMe account will soon be created to help fundraise!
Check out the Oak Ridge Cemetery Internment Records HERE
New Signs around the Cemetery
Among the Foundation’s current projects is an effort to address the aging signage throughout the cemetery, including informative graphics about select gravesites, notable areas, and historic trees, as well as cohesive wayfinding signs to simplify navigation throughout the grounds. We have also worked to bring the signage at Oak Ridge into the mobile-friendly age. The new signs will include “Quick-Read” codes that smartphones of every make and model can scan to find beautiful photographs and biographical information of people, trees, and locations. With your generous support, this project will bring the history of Oak Ridge to life for a new generation of amateur historians!
The “New” Original Entrance
In the summer of 2015, Oak Ridge played host to an international audience of Lincoln enthusiasts and history aficionados for the 150th anniversary of President Lincoln’s funeral reenactment. The 2015 Lincoln Funeral Train entered Oak Ridge Cemetery through the newly-rebuilt archway sponsored by the Oak Ridge Cemetery Foundation and its dedicated members and donors. We were proud, and more than a little fortunate, to honor President Lincoln and his legacy with this special memorium.
Thanks to the ongoing support of our members and community partners, the Foundation will continue to preserve the historical significance of Oak Ridge in new and innovative ways. Join us as we protect this national treasure for decades to come.