Secret Cemeteries of Westchester

By Giulia Gionta. Small cemeteries can be found in unlikely places in Yonkers, tucked beside busy roads and behind modern storefronts. Legible headstones date back to the early 19th century, and many illegible headstones are weathered and worn by the elements and age. Several headstones are dilapidated and crumbling. It’s hard to imagine a Yonkers before its urbanization, but these hidden cemeteries hold the life of Yonkers’ modest beginnings before and beginning industrialization. Two cemeteries of particular historical interest to the city have their roots tied to churches close by, signifying the importance religious faith to these early settlers of Yonkers. The stark contrast between the quiet of sitting among these gravesites compared to the heavy noise of traffic just outside their borders is a bit off-putting, yet peaceful. These rare hamlets provide almost a sanctuary away from the typical urban life surrounding them. Stumbling upon them, their presence, though disquieting, welcomes you in to discover a piece of the town’s forgotten past.

Many families were buried together in Greenville Community Reformed Church Cemetery. Here lies the Seely family.

An almost entirely illegible and weather-worn headstone.

Entering to the left side of the Greenville Community Reformed Church Cemetery, the adjacent Burger King cannot be seen but can be smelt.

Uneven expanse of cemetery grounds.

Some tombstones have fallen.

Just behind this headstone lies the Greenville school football field. The cemetery is completely out of view from the field.

Old headstones adjacent to Asbury Crestwood United Methodist Church.

Rows of headstones of different sizes in the cemetery, located in Tuckahoe.

The gravesite looks out onto a busy intersection with an entrance to the Bronx River Parkway.

The gravesite is adjacent to the backyards of private homes up on a hill.

Widgetized Section

Go to Admin » Appearance » Widgets » and move Gabfire Widget: Share into that BigPicture-Share zone