For their outstanding effort to preserve historic cemeteries, three Maryland residents – one a state Senator – have received the Periwinkle Award from the Coalition to Protect Maryland Burial Sites, Inc., Maryland’s only non-profit organization dedicated to preserving and protecting the state’s old family and public cemeteries, historic churchyards, and Indian burial grounds.
The awards were presented on April 1, 2000 in Frederick, Maryland.
Leonard Becraft (in Montgomery County)
Senator Christopher McCabe (Montgomery and Howard Counties)
For four generations, Leonard Becraft’s family owned the historic Greenwood estate in Brookeville, dating back to the 1700’s. They cared for the Davis Family Cemetery, which is part of the estate. Since the property was sold several years ago, Mr. Becraft had become increasingly concerned about the disrepair of the cemetery. Several months ago he turned to State Senator Christopher McCabe and the Coalition for help. Together they are now working with the owners of Greenwood and the cemetery to ensure that the historic burial ground, which includes descendants of the well-known Davis, Bowie, and Gaither families, will be maintained in good order. In addition to personally intervening on behalf of the Davis Family Cemetery, Senator McCabe has consistently supported the Coalition’s efforts in the Maryland General Assembly to strengthen State laws protecting cemeteries.
David Mills of Lanham (in Prince George’s County)
David Mills has been leading his own crusade to ensure a sound future for the Lanham United Methodists Church Cemetery. The cemetery dates from the mid-1800’s and is the burial site of several families well-known in the Lanham area, including the Beall, Beckett, Duval, Lanham, and Yost families. In recent years, the cemetery has fallen into disrepair from neglect and occasional vandalism. Spurred on by Mr. Mills’ efforts, the Church trustees are beginning a major rehabilitation of the cemetery, including photo-documentation of all grave markers, computerization of cemetery records, repair of broken and fallen headstones, and the enhancement of the cemetery grounds.