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Downtown Community Room at ERUCC
Frederick, Frederick County, Maryland

President Eileen McGuckian called the 31st Annual Meeting of the Coalition to Protect Maryland Burial Sites (video link) to order at 10:00 a.m. on May 6, 2023 and welcomed members and guests, those present both in-person and online via Zoom.

Attendees and organizers were pleased to be in the Downtown Community Room at ERUCC and acknowledged the significance of meeting in Frederick, Maryland, during the county’s 275th anniversary.

The brief business meeting included reports from Treasurer Reginald Bishop, Membership Chair Kristin Kraske, and Trader Foundation Secretary Glenn Wallace. Re-elected for the term 2023-2025 were President Eileen McGuckian, Vice President Glenn Wallace, and Directors Glenn Blackwell, Kristin Kraske, Elizabeth Larney, Robert Mosko, and Tina Simmons.  New Directors are Hope Metzler of Baltimore County and Luann Moorman of Baltimore City.

This organization has remained vigilant to its mission to provide guidance to people and cemeteries throughout the pandemic years. We have been contacted by many people seeking advice and assistance to care for their projects throughout Maryland. We continue to ask for help in updating the County Pages with vital information and resource links.

Two issues of the Coalition Courier were published in the last year, in color.

Coalition members volunteered in cleaning up cemeteries in Dorchester and Harford Counties as part of our commitment for annual projects.

The Coalition participated in a one-year working committee to study the needs of historical African American cemeteries and the obstacles they encountered. The study and report, led by the Maryland Commission on African American History and Culture and the Maryland Historical Trust,  resulted in findings and solid recommendations is available here. One assist to burial sites in need is the Maryland General Assembly’s allocation of $5M in funds to African American capital projects, including cemeteries, starting in the upcoming Fiscal Year.

Legislation improving conditions and futures of Maryland cemeteries continues to be a focus of the Coalition.  At the Open Forum, proposals for new legislation were initially discussed, and interested parties are asked to express ideas.

CPMBS encourages every Maryland county, town, and jurisdiction to identify the burial sites within its borders. Almost half of the counties do not have inventories that can provide this information for a state-wide database to be used as a solid foundation of protection, legislation, preservation, and active participation that needs to follow.

This year, the PRINCE Project, in cooperation with the Maryland Department of Safety and Corrections, the Office of Cemetery Oversight, CPMBS, and the Trader Foundation, officially started to train Maryland prisoners in conservation practices. Workdays were successful at multiple cemetery sites, as were the first educational sessions conducted.

Individuals and organizations interested in participating in Coalition committees, initiatives, clean-up sessions, educational programs, etc. are encouraged to contact us at mail@cpmbs.org.

Keynote presentations:

Coalition’s Educational and Demonstration Videos:

The 2023 Periwinkle Awards were presented to Bryan Main and Childlene Brooks.

A very informative Open Forum and Group Discussion was held. You can listen to the conversations here.

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