Moline rebuilds crumbling cemetery wall to preserve history

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It's a historical cemetery in the Quad Cities that has seen better days, but now the run-down site has gotten the city's attention. Some say it's a project way overdue.

Riverside Cemetery in Moline holds a lot of history. The cemetery was built back in 1873 and it's not hard to see its age.

"I think it's a lovely place to walk, but most importantly it holds a history of the people that built this community and still are," said Kathleen Seusy, a volunteer at the Rock Island Historical Society.

However, the historical site is starting to fall apart.

A retaining wall on the property is as old as the cemetery itself, and the wall no longer serves its purpose. Parts of the wall have collapsed, resulting in leaning tombstones and erosion problems.

"If they don't do something, that whole thing is going to slide," said Seusy.

"There's other portions of the steep hillside that slide down, and so we don't want any graves to be lost," said Andy Lehman, an engineer for the City of Moline.

The city is replacing the out-of-date wall, a $200,000 project.

"We're removing those portions and then placing a new wall in front of it," said Lehman.

It's a project that Seusy says is necessary to keep the cemetery standing but, more importantly, to keep its history alive.

"Cemeteries should be looked after and, unfortunately, the dead don't speak," said Seusy.

Depending on the weather, the city says they expect the project to be done by the end of October 2014.

1 Comment

  • Mrs. Kite

    Great idea. Also, we should keep up on some of the other old cemeteries. The Pioneer Cemetery in Rock Island, for example, could at least use a memorial stone or something.

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