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No peace at final resting place

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By Cindy Simpson

Several tombstones have been knocked over at McCarroll graveyard, an African American graveyard near Harriman Cemetery.

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“We’re having some vandalism,” said Bronce Cleveland, one of the community members devastated by the destruction of the small graveyard that’s near Harriman Cemetery.

Cleveland approached the Harriman City Council to seek advice in helping clean up the cemetery and preventing future problems.
He and others said they have been unable to find who is responsible for the cemetery and wondered if it might fall to the city.

City officials, however, have found nothing to indicate the city plays a role in the cemetery’s upkeep or responsibility for it.

Mayor Chris Mason said the question has often come up regarding other burial grounds.

Those include Harriman Cemetery, which Mason said has also had markers damaged and destroyed.

Harriman Cemetery had previously been operated by a nonprofit entity that had fallen away.

Community member Jesse Rittenhouse, whose late son, Matthew Rittenhouse, is buried in the cemetery, has taken over responsibility of upkeep, Mason said.
Mason said it’s his understanding that Rittenhouse and the Harriman Cemetery board  intended to get together with concerned residents to address the McCarroll plots.
Chrystal Jones said she was speaking in behalf of her father Clyde Jones.

“My father has been trying to get the road paved almost 20 something years,” she said.

“Dad has been out there since I was a kid,” Jones said.
“Dad tried years ago to get the road paved. It has been a gravel road since I was a child,” she added.

The road comes out at Meadowview Drive on the backside.
Officials talked of the road being dedicated to the city so that it could be paved at some point.