Thursday, March 28, 2019 – In their first visit, over 40 volunteers from Plant Bowen gathered on Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service to help restore the historic Black Pioneers Cemetery in Euharlee, Ga. Downed trees, overgrown brush
The cemetery was in such need of restoration that the volunteers determined their mission couldn’t be completed on that day alone. So, the volunteers made a promise to come back to continue their work. Volunteers from Plant Bowen will assist the city of Euharlee as the restoration and beautification efforts continue throughout the year. The employees’ next visit to the cemetery is scheduled for this Friday, March 29, from 8 a.m. until noon.
According to plant manager Brandon Dillard, Bowen is dedicated to helping restore the cemetery. “The city manager of Euharlee quickly brought up this cemetery when our Citizens of Georgia Power representative reached out to him about potential service projects. They can really use our help with projects like this one. He was excited about it,” said Dillard. “Once our team got out there, we knew we could do some good by helping restore the site. The history is important and it’s a part of the town that needs to be remembered.”
The Black Pioneer Cemetery is a one-acre cemetery that lies between the Euharlee Presbyterian and Euharlee Baptist churches. It’s located near Plant Bowen.
Most of its graves were originally unmarked. The Euharlee Historical Society, the Etowah Valley Historical Society (EVHS), and the City of Euharlee undertook the task of clearing the cemetery and identifying graves in the late 1990s. EVHS members investigated to determine the location of the graves in the cemetery and over 300 graves were found.
Grant money has also been secured by the city of Euharlee to supplement the efforts. Once available, it will be allocated toward further improvements at the cemetery.