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Reclaiming the past
Ellabell man works to preserve old cemetery
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You wouldn’t believe it unless you saw it with your own eyes.
Nestled about 200 feet off Indian Trail Road in Ellabell lies the Maulden Chapel Cemetery, estimated to be about 120 years old.

But it wasn’t much of anything until this past summer, when life-long Ellabell resident Edward Murchison decided to start clearing out the African American cemetery.

Murchison said the cemetery was left unattended for a long time – long enough for the entire site to be completely unnoticeable from the road. He decided someone needed to upkeep it, so he began working.

“I’d like to get some more volunteers; I’ve only got two now. I’d really appreciate some more help in fixing it up and leveling the land,” he said, adding that he’s got a lot of faith in his project. “Through county plats, I saw that there were a number of graves out here and I wanted to find them and reestablish the cemetery.”

Murchison said he’s still got a lot of work to do. Over the summer, the overgrown site was bulldozed, but still needs to be burned and the larger roots that were left behind from the bulldozing need to be removed before the land can be leveled.

Murchison is looking for volunteers to donate time and labor to help clear the rest of the area, or equipment to help get the rest of the clearing done, so the cemetery can be more easily accessed. He said he could also use funds to help purchase cement to piece back together some of the dilapidated gravestones. Additionally, he plans to ask the county to consider building a road from Hwy. 204 through the woods out to the cemetery’s site.

To lend a hand or for information, call Murchison at 858-3252.

Read the full story and find out who’s known to be buried in the Maulden Chapel Cemetery in the midweek edition of the Bryan County News on Wednesday, Dec. 26.


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