I have taken one or two guided history walks through local cemeteries and found they provide fascinating glimpses into the past. Peter Cipkowski, President of the Roeliff Jansen Historical Society and Hillsdale Town Supervisor, says that "cemeteries are open air museums and have a deep historical connection to the local community."  So on Sunday, May 20 at 2 pm, the Society will host an illustrated presentation with local historians Jeanne Kiefer and Lauren Letellier.

The pair will share how the 15 cemeteries that dot Hillsdale — from tiny family plots to abandoned church graveyards to rural cemeteries — reveal the story of a vanished past when the region played a dynamic role in America’s transition from the colonial era to the early Republic.The presentation will have a special focus on the stories behind the recently discovered Krum and McKinstry graveyards.

Peter Cipkowski, RJHS
Peter Cipkowski, RJHS


Their research forms the foundation of the Town’s plan to post informational signs in select cemeteries and initiate a plan to communicate their significance. The signs will provide historical context and, when possible, identify veterans from the American Revolution.

Their presentation will be at the Roeliff Jansen Museum on Route 344 and Miles Road, a short distance off NY Route 22 in the historic hamlet of Copake Falls, New York.

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