Friday, May 11, 2001

Old cemetery has development stymied

The Associated Press

        LEXINGTON — A group is trying to preserve a 130-year-old family cemetery for its historical value over the objection of a housing developer who claims it was neglected for years.

        Dennis Anderson, who is trying to develop the 5.3-acre plot near a black cemetery, said the family that previously owned the land once had planned to develop the land themselves. Later they put a headstone on the site to make it difficult for him to move forward with his plans.

        “When it (a historic designation) becomes a no-growth tool it loses credibility,” he said.

        Joyce Brown, whose family once owned the land, said her father's and grandmother's remains are buried there and she has 26 death certificates showing other burials on the property since 1910.

        Ms. Brown said her mother once filed a development plan but that her own efforts to retain and preserve the land were thwarted by a debt for back taxes.

        The county's planning commission was supposed to vote Thursday on a request by the Cadentown Neighborhood Association to have the land preserved for its historical value. The commission postponed the vote until May 24.


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