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Maplewood Cemetery

Foggy Day in Maplewood
Photo by Lisa Curreri

Another foggy day in Maplewood
Photo by Lisa Curreri

Foggy Maplewood
Photo by MaryLee Mills

Maplewood Cemetery
Photo by MaryLee Mills

Maplewood
Photo by MaryLee Mills

Maplewood Cemetery is arguably the best known cemetery in Lincolnville given its size and prominence along Ducktrap Road just off  RT 1. In its early years the burying ground was called Juniper Grove. The earliest written record we have is from 1888, when Harry Crehore signed
a Trustee Deed to George Ames, George Thomas, R.B. Sherman, and A.A. Fletcher for a half acre piece of land known as Juniper Grove Cemetery. Despite having a name and being referred to as a burying ground we do not know who was buried there. The land was part of a large estate acquired by John Studley in 1801. After his death, it was purchased, in 1849, by Henry Crehore Jr., married to Mary Ann Studley, granddaughter of John.  In 1872, he mortgaged it to the Camden Savings Bank. It was their son, Harry, who paid the Bank $1.00 to release the cemetery to him in 1887, so that he could give the $1.00 Trustees Deed to the Juniper Grove Association.

There were three stipulations in the deed: the first was that it was to be used forever as a burying ground for dead people, secondly, that the grantees “shall on demand, convey to each party who has paid or shall hereafter pay therefor any lots or lots on said cemetery,” and thirdly, that the grantees should sell and convey any unused lots to the persons who seemed best, and from the purchase money pay Harry Crehore $10.00 from each lot sold.

By 1891, Henry had his land back and in 1899, he deeded additional land to Juniper Grove. According to Karen Simmons, Treasurer of the Maplewood Cemetery Association, the original part of the cemetery ran from the right side of Cemetery Road 2 (at the end of the cemetery farthest from RT 1) to the left side of Road 4 but not as far back as today. The piece added in 1899, ran from the left side of Road 1 to the left side of Road 5. The stipulations were the same as in the deed from Harry with the exception that the payment from the sold lots was to be made to Henry until it reached $150.00

In 1906, the cemetery was incorporated as Maplewood when the Juniper Grove Cemetery Association, consisting of George Ames, E.L Wade, R.B. Sherman, L.D. Ames, Charles F. Carver, Charles A. Frohock, and E.L. Freeman sold it to the Maplewood Cemetery Corporation of which they were also the trustees. Administering this cemetery has always been a large job: it became an increasingly popular place for burials as people realized that the graves had a better chance of being cared for here than in small family burying grounds. In the early 1900’s several graves were moved from family plots, particularly Ulmer Cemetery, to Maplewood. Reportedly among them were Isaac and Deborah Carver, and Benjamin and Lucinda Carver who lived at Ducktrap.

In reading Minutes from Association Meetings it is clear that maintaining the cemetery has always been of great concern. In the early days families cared for their own plots; mowing and cleaning stones. As time went on families moved away and stones deteriorated. Fees were needed to provided perpetual care for the cemetery. They were set at $10.00 and then $15.00 and, in 1965, $40.00 per year but it was soon discovered this did not meet the needs. In 1986, a one time fee of $300.00 was requested and then, in 1988, it was included in the purchase price of $800.00.

Expansion has also been a problem as the cemetery is surrounded by wetlands. In 1933, Erastus Collemor deeded two small parcels to the cemetery, and in 1958, there was a land swap with the abutting telephone company to increase space. The Treasurers book shows  an expenditure of $72.81 for labor, dynamite and caps as an effort was made to get rid of some ledge in 1939.

The cemetery is two acres of Lincolnville history. Many of the people whose cellar holes I have found on North Cobbtown Road are buried here. As in all Lincolnville cemeteries, I was reminded of the told and untold stories lying within the bounds of the granite posts and chain fencing.



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