Spirits Alive was formed in 2006 when folks decided to organize around their dedication to the preservation and beautification of one of the area's oldest public burial grounds, the Eastern Cemetery in Portland, Maine. It is comprised of a large group of volunteers as well as a all-volunteer board of directors.
Spirits Alive is a non-profit organization dedicated to the protection and preservation of Portland’s historic Eastern Cemetery through a range of activities including promotion and education.
About the Eastern Cemetery
Established in 1668, the Eastern Cemetery is located at 224 Congress Street in Portland, Maine. The oldest historic landscape in the city, the cemetery is home to around 4,000 interred.
An 1890 map and survey of the cemetery was done by William A. Goodwin. In 1990, this survey was updated by historian William Jordan. A map was also created.
This plan was funded by funds from several grants and passed by the city council in 2012.
Spirits Alive Has a Few Special Projects
Our group is directed by a small board and supported by numerous volunteers and Friends who plan and conduct a series of events every year. These events help us support the ongoing maintenance of and special projects at the cemetery.
- We perform planting and maintenance tasks according to the landscape plan created by Barry Hosmer, ASLA on volunteer workdays. Barry has been working on the site since 1992.
- We contracted with Chicora Foundation to help us create a preservation plan which will help guide restoration, educational, and advocacy efforts for years to come. This Master Plan was adopted by the city of Portland in 2012.
- We funded the repair of the Congress Street fence pickets and gate locks through the city of Portland who contracted with Maine-based StandFast Works Forge to complete the work.
- After advocating with the city, funds were set aside to restore the Victorian Tool Shed aka “Dead House.” which began in July 2014.
- We have completed the recording phase of the Stone Survey where we recorded the information of and about the each stone in the cemetery on paper. We are continuing the project with our Stone Photography Project.
Spirits Alive is a 501(c)(3) organization.
Please address written correspondence to:
PO Box 18209
Portland, Maine 04112-8209