Cemeteries of Madison County, NY
Cazenovia Village Cemetery
... excepting and running east of the aforesaid described piece of
land in the north west corner a piece of Ground three rods (49.5
feet) square which the said parties of the first part part (sic)
reserve for a Burying place for themselves and their heirs forever...
This indicates the cemetery to be either in the northwest corner or just outside of the northwest corner - the first possibility is more likely. It may also be that the designation of the northwest corner being in error, the cemetery actually being at the northeast corner, in which case the tradition is correct, and some of the later deed data will also fit well - even if the cemetery is running east of the church lot.
Based on what the unclear evidence tells us there are eight different possible locations for the cemetery, in two clusters at the northeast and northwest corners of the church lot. All but three of which are on school property, and thus probably destroyed, or at least unstudyable. The three off of school property should be intact - if that is where it is. Those locations at the northwest corner would be under the school at the eastern entrance of the old High School where it meets the Middle School. The other locations, three of which are not on school property, are in the vicinity of the southeast corner of the school property at the southeast corner of the main wing of the Middle School. Excavation during building of the school in the 1950s would have destroyed most evidence of the cemetery (grave shafts) nearest the school; under the site of the house (formerly the carriage house for the Emory house) at 9 Emory Ave.; at the end of the property for 43 Sullivan Street where the yard bounds on the school property; and lastly, in the same situation for 45 Sullivan Street. It is presently impossible to determine which of the eight possible locations is the correct location. Hopefully it is not on the school property where all evidence of it has surely been destroyed.
In the village the place set apart for such purposes, "in the rear of the meeting house" was found to be highly objectional as in some seasons of the year, they would have to bail the water out of the grave before the corpse could be lowered into it. This act made it exceedingly desirable with many to find a more suitable place to deposit the remains of their friends.
Very few felt they would be willing themselves, to be thrust into the mud and water as it had been necessary to do so often.
In removing the corpse of a woman who had not been buried long, she was found to he lying with her face down.
Some thought she might have been buried alive but as there was no evidence of a struggle, she must have been turned by the water, for where there is room a corpse will always be found with its face down, in the water.
The relatives and friends of those who are interred in the Old Burying Ground, to the east of The Presbyterian Church, in the village of Cazenovia, are notified that he now owns the premises, and is about to occupy the same. He requests therefore, that the remains of those deposited on his land, be removed previous to the 1st day of September next.
From the Village meeting minutes of March 18, 1814 (VM:36) we find the following report:
On reading the representation + complaint of sundry inhabitants
of this Village stating that the burying ground near the Meeting
House in this Village has become a public nuisance insomuch that
the inconvenience of people attending church has become great +
growing, + the health of the Village endangered.
Ordered that after the 20th inst. no person be interred in the
burying ground near the Meeting House in this Village.
In about three weeks a new cemetery site was found and purchased by the Village Trustees. It is believed that all the burials in the old cemetery
were removed to the new cemetery, called Evergreen Cemetery.
Whatever the circumstances of Ormsbee's purchases and sales, his plans to occupy the cemetery were never carried out, for reasons unknown, and the cemetery continued to be used until Evergreen Cemetery was opened in 1814. Although the burials were moved to the new site the Presbyterian Church stood here for a few more years until it was moved to its present
site in 1828. The church lot then reverted back to John Lincklaen's successor (Jonathan D. Ledyard) as the lot was originally sold:
... upon this express condition and reservation that the premises hereby intended to be conveyed shall be reserved by the parties of the second part (Church Trustees) and successors for a church yard and burying ground and the building or church thereon erected shall be used and appropriated for the sole and only purpose of worshipping God agreeably to the Dutch reformed Presbyterian or congregational four (?) and shall not be appropriated or used for any other purpose whatsoever ...
Ledyard sold the church lot some time before 1832 to Perry G. Childs and Charles Stebbins as on September 15 of that year, Stebbins sold a larger parcel to Childs that included "... part of the old Meeting house lot conveyed to said Childs + Stebbins by J.D.Ledyard ..." (Deed AZ:209). The part of the church lot conveyed to Childs was the westernmost portion being 100 feet in front on the green.
In 1836 Stebbins was noted as the owner of the lot "formerly Occupied by the Trustees of the First Presbyterian congregation" The 1835 Enos Cushing map of the village shows the lots in the same configuration as that shown on Henry Hart's 1852 village map when Sidney Te Fairchfild (heir of Perry G. Childs) owned the 100 foot wide piece mentioned, and Charles Stebbins owned the remainder (both owned much adjoining land). In 1884 John Stebbins, heir of Charles Stebbins, sold the central 150 feet of the old church property (but only 250 feet deep - about 50 feet less than the church) to Percy McCarthy Emory (Deed 161:217) who built his house on this site in that year. In 1889 he purchased the easterly 100 feet of the church lot, being the present property at a Emory Ave., again not including the back 50 feet where the cemetery may have been located (Deed 176:86). The central portion of the former church lot, 150 feet wide and 250 feet deep was eventually sold by the Emory family to "Central School District #1 of Caenovia, Fenner, and Nelson" in 1948 (Deed 406:260). The Emory family sold 9 Emory Ave., the carriage house from their estate, to John R. and Catherine R. Voght in 1958 (Deed 552:497). This property is now owned by Douglas R. Keefe (tax lot 094.43.1.26, Deed 940:69). I have not found how the school acquired the west part of the church lot (Fairchild property) or the possible cemetery location which was not part
of the Emory purchases noted above.
Bryan, Dorcas, died January 20, 1813, age 52 years, (#188, J-57).
Burnell, Charlotte, died March 11, 1814, age 4 years, (#374, J-96).
Burnell, Eliza Ann, died November 8, 1813, age 2 years, (#373, J-96).
Burnell, Mary K., died June 5, 1808, age 9 months, (#372, J-96).
Coman, Ziba, died December 1, 1807, age 34 years, (#1424, H-389).
Fay, Rebecca, died August 20, 1812, age 35 years, (#360, J-92).
Forman, Jonathan, died May 25, 1809, age 54 years, (#75, J-27).
Forman, Mary Ledyard, died May 31, 1806, age 47 years, (#76, J-27),
Hearsey, Amanda, died July 10, 1813, age 18 years, (#109, J-37).
Hearsey, James, died March 18, 1814, age 14 years, (#108, J-37).
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