ADAMS, Mass. — The Cemetery Commission appointed two residents to take care of two historic cemeteries.
The commission last week appointed residents Allen Mendel and Johanna Maxwell as the caretakers of Daniels Court Cemetery and Bowens Corner Cemetery.
"It is an extension of a back yard," Commissioner Bruce Shepely said about Bowens Corner Cemetery. "It has historical implications that go back to the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812. The latest burial is 1865."
The previous caretaker of Bowens Corner Cemetery can no longer maintain the East Road graveyard and abuttor Maxwell contacted the commission and said she would be interested.
"She is doing a great job up there it looks good," Shepley said. "She has a high interest in the historical piece and she is excited to contribute."
Shepley added that Maxwell said she was interested in installing a small stone walkway leading into the cemetery.
This status comes with a $100 annual stipend from the veterans account and the commission also voted to permit Mendel to do the same job at Daniels Court.
Mendel has taken care of the Daniels Court Cemetery for years and although he has received the stipend, he was never officially voted in as the caretaker.
"It was never officially appointed and Allen said it was overgrown when they bought the property and they knew it was there and he has been maintaining it over the years," he said.
On a side note, Shepley said he wanted to research what the exact protocol was when a cemetery becomes abandoned.
"What happens when a cemetery becomes discontinued?" he asked. "There are plenty of cemeteries scattered throughout New England that are overgrown, on private property, or in the woods."
In other business, the commission addressed a broken water spigot in the old section of Bellevue Cemetery and Shepley said the Department of Public Works does not intend to fix it.
"That pipe is disconnected underneath. It is not a case of just hooking it up so I talked to DPW and they do not have the funding to replace it," he said.
Shepley said work would include digging up the road and it is not a priority town project.
"Maybe there is funding elsewhere but I think as a priority for the town it certainly does not fall high on the list," he said. "We need roads paved, there are collapsing manholes."
The issue was brought forth by a resident who felt it was unfair that a single large section of the cemetery did not have direct access to water.
Shepley did not have an update on the ongoing Bellevue Cemetery garage project but there is a prebid conference Thursday.
"I have nothing and nothing has come forward to me," he said.
The town plans to refurbish an existing garage at Bellevue Cemetery to store and equipment, maintain equipment, and other department needs.
iBerkshires.com welcomes critical, respectful dialogue; please keep comments focused on the issues and not on personalities. Profanity, obscenity, racist language and harassment are not allowed. iBerkshires reserves the right to ban commenters or remove commenting on any article at any time. Concerns may be sent to email@example.com.
iBerkshires.com welcomes critical, respectful dialogue. Name-calling, personal attacks, libel, slander or foul language is not allowed. All comments are reviewed before posting and will be deleted or edited as necessary.
Elections Go Off Without a Hitch in Adams, Cheshire
By Jeff SnoonianiBerkshires Staff
Mike Kruszyna, seen with his wife, Karen, at the polls Monday, unseated incumbent Jeffrey Warner for a three-year term on the Cheshire Board of Health.
ADAMS, Mass. — Adams and Cheshire held their annual town elections Monday and despite all the changes necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic, there were no problems reported at either polling station.
The towns typically hold local elections on the first Monday in May but the social distancing guidelines implemented by Gov. Charlie Baker nearly 80 days ago forced them to draw up new plans. The towns are obligated to hold elections on the same day because of their shared school district.
Voter turnout was down in both towns, which could be attributed to the virus or to the lack of uncontested offices.
Cheshire had just two, the Board of Health, where challenger Mike Kruszyna unseated incumbent Jeffrey Warner for a three-year term (275-141), and a write-in campaign by Colin Haas that fell just short (195-173) for the Water Commissioner spot held by Mickey Biagini. There were 420 votes cast in total.
Director of Community Development Donna Cesan said the town has decided to terminate the proposal process for the Memorial Building redevelopment with the hopes of reissuing the RFP again in September.
click for more