The 9th Pennsylvania Reserves is accepting private donations that will be used to replace/restore the illegible, damaged, leaning or sunken marble headstones on the graves of 120 Civil War and 5 WW1 veterans buried in the Grand Army of the Republic’s Soldiers Section.
Many of the Civil War veterans were once members of the Capt. Thomas Espy Post #153, GAR, Carnegie, PA, and the Gen. James A. Garfield Post #215, GAR, West End, Pittsburgh, PA. Three WW1 veterans were battlefield casualties and two were killed in post-war accidents. They are buried in graves adjacent to the Civil War soldier’s section.
These headstones were not provided by the US Government and it is likely that a local interest provided them to the cemetery to honor the veterans. The result of the ravages of time is evident on every headstone. All have deteriorated over the years with many becoming completely illegible. Those that have sunk below ground and were somewhat shielded from the environment may be serviceable and may have years left until they too qualify for replacement. The headstones that are only partially visible will need to be raised and cleaned before the number of replacements can be determined.
The 9th will use your donation to either install a new headstone provided by the US Government on each grave according to the Department of Veterans Affairs, National Cemetery Administration’s (VA) replacement guidelines or the funds will be used to extract, clean and reset the leaning or sunken headstones following the VA’s setting procedures, thereby insuring that each headstone will be upright and aligned.
Sponsorship of an individual Civil War or WW1 veteran is available for $120/each which is the amount required to cover the cemetery labor, expenses and materials for installing a new marker or resetting one that is still legible but misaligned or sunken. To sponsor a veteran, forward a check to the library with a note that indicates the name of the veteran that you wish to sponsor. See table below for a listing of the veterans.
In the event that there are excess funds, they will be applied to the adjoining WW2, Korean War and Vietnam War veterans sections. These headstones are all in good condition, but many have shifted or sunk and are in need of adjustments.