Spirits Alive at the Eastern Cemetery
Spirits Alive at the Eastern Cemetery | eNews, November 2015
Family plot, Eastern Cemetery
Dawn Landscape in the Eastern Cemetery

The Year in Numbers

We've had a fabulous and productive year!

The numbers are in, and thanks to all of your support, 2015 has been one for the record books.

  • 98 stones reset, cleaned, mortared, and/or put back together (8 more than last year)
  • 84 tours given this year (double last year's total)
  • 353 attended guided tours given by 8 tour guides (130 more than last year)
  • 462 people came through the gates for Walk Among the Shadows (120 more than last year)
  • About 30 faithful volunteers managed these incredible feats!

Though the acreage is owned and maintained by the city, its budget is always tight. It is through the efforts of people giving their time and their money to our organization that we continue to improve this important resource so that more people than ever can experience its art, history, and sacred space. Please join us in 2016—we can always use more help, and donations are always welcome.

View of Burial Hill, Plymouth, Mass., U.S.A.

Winter Lecture Series

January to March 2016

Mark your 2016 calendars! We will host the following engaging speakers on Saturdays at The Wishcamper Center at USM. All talks are 1:30pm to 3:00pm.

  • January 30 - Emerson W. Baker, author of Storm of Witchcraft: The Salem Trials and the American Experience
  • Feburary 27 - Jeffrey Bolster, author of Black Jacks: African American Seamen in the Age of Sail
  • March 26 - Stephen O'Neill, associate director and curator of the Pilgrim Hall Museum will present on burial customs of the Pilgrims
Jordan tombstone and Mussey tomb monument images
Top: Captain John Mussey monument in Evergreen Cemetery.
Center: Inscription from side of Mussey monument (photos by Ron Romano). 
Bottom: Jordan Tomb stone in the Eastern Cemetery (photo by H. Doggett).

Subterranean Celebrity: Captain John Mussey

Died 1817

When Evergreen Cemetery was first created, residents were allowed to move their interred to the new garden cemetery from the older cemeteries. Many jumped at the chance, including the son of Captain John Mussey. He sold the empty tomb in Eastern to the Jordan family, and transferred all that was mortal of his father and mother—as well as their box tomb monument—to the new family plot at Evergreen.

The Jordan tomb is assumed to be empty with only a small marker to note its ownership.

The Mussey family was and continued to be prominent in Portland. It is written that John Jr. tried to have the remains of the captains (Blythe and Burrows) moved as well—but an unimpressed crowd at city hall objected.

Eastern Cemetery 1817.
Removed to this spot 1871.

Special thanks to Ron Romano for the photos and information on the Mussey move.

You can suggest a subterranean celebrity! Just send an email—it doesn't take much to make a nice little story. An index of all of our Subterranean Celebrities is available.

Ask Amazon to Donate to Spirits Alive

If you're an Amazon shopper, here's an easy way to support your favorite historic Maine cemetery:

  • Go to smile.amazon.com
  • Enter "Spirits Alive" in the box
  • Choose the non-profit in Portland, Maine from the list

Voila! A portion of all of your purchases through smile.amazon.com will go to our efforts to support, conserve and promote this historic outdoor museum. Thank you!

$5 Friendships Help the Eastern Cemetery

Support the work of Spirits Alive with your giving

For only $5, you can help Spirits Alive keep the Eastern Cemetery alive for generations to come and join as a Friend. Through your support, you can help us, an ALL-VOLUNTEER organization, to continue to:

  • Keep the gates open – encouraging the community to explore its open and safe green space
  • Offer education about the cemetery and its residents to the public – through tours, lectures, and events
  • Encourage and support the city in keeping the site clean and safe for visitors of all ages
  • Preserve this incredible outdoor museum and sacred historic landscape
We are a non-profit, all-volunteer organization dedicated to the protection and preservation of Portland, Maine’s historic Eastern Cemetery through a range of activities including promotion and education.

© 2015 Spirits Alive at the Eastern Cemetery
PO Box 18209, Portland, ME 04112-8209 
Copyright © 2015 Spirits Alive, All rights reserved.