Cemetery Mystery Makes Local News

Posted on: March 13th, 2009 by Sarah Heffern 1 Comment

It's not every night that I'm flipping the channels and see one of my co-workers on the promo for the evening news -- but that's just what happened a couple of days ago. And not just any colleague, mind you, but the guy who sits in the office right next to mine. How I missed the film crew in my hallway I'll never know.

Our local Fox affiliate stopped by to interview Rob Nieweg, director of the Southern Field Office, for a truly fascinating story about how gravestones from one of DC's African-American cemeteries made their way to the banks of the Potomac River.

It's a story I hadn't heard before, and to me, it really demonstrates the breadth of work that happens at the National Trust for Historic Preservation. I've worked with Rob on projects like the Tomb of the Unknowns and the fight against the Wilderness Wal-Mart and sit literally in the next room -- yet, here's a whole piece of his work that's entirely new to me. As a chained-to-my-desk headquarters staffer, I am constantly blown away by the work our field staff are involved in. And so, since I know Rob isn't the sort to toot his own horn about being on television, I thought I'd share it here.

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Sarah Heffern

Sarah Heffern

Sarah Heffern is the social media strategist for the National Trust’s Public Affairs team. While she embraces all things online and pixel-centric, she’s also a hard-core building hugger, having fallen for preservation in a fifth grade “Built Environment” class. Follow her on Twitter at @smheffern.

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One Response

  1. Pat McCoy

    March 14, 2009

    I was half-listening to Fox 5 News on Saturday night when I heard the name of Columbian Harmony Cemetery mentioned. My ears instantly perked up as both my grandfather and great-grandfather were buried there. When Columbian Harmony Cemetery was moved out of Washington, DC, both of my ancestors ended up in unmarked graves.

    When I heard about the grave markers found along the Potomac, I couldn’t help but wonder if they included any for my grandfather and great-grandfather. It would be nice to be able to solve that mystery.