Having completed the tree work back in February, the cemetery was finally ready for some much needed site work. S.Vecchione Inc. of Oreland brought in several pieces of equipment to do the job.
Several large piles of debris needed to be cleared to prepare for the final grading
A mini excavator is useful for pulling out rotted tree stumps, compacting the back fill and moving small piles of debris.
This tracked skid steer loader has an attachment that can grip logs.
This machine was also used to re-contour the ground on the uphill side of the cemetery to keep rain water away from flowing into the stone wall and undermining the foundation.
After fine tuning the final grade, grass seed and straw mulch was spread to minimize erosion. In about a month the site will be green with new grass.
Special thanks to Tory Vecchione for bringing his equipment, experience, and professionalism to the project. A beautiful job!
Please join us for a volunteer clean up as we prepare to begin Phase I of the preservation work. meet us at the cemetery on Saturday, October 19th from noon to 4:oo. The work will involve pulling weeds, raking leaves, and removing debris from within the graveyard. The bulk of this work will be done by hand to prevent damaging the stones with power tools. Please bring gloves and wear long pants and sturdy shoes. Rakes, clippers and other hand tools will be provided but feel free to bring your own. Rain date is the following week October 26. We are looking forward to seeing you!
Back in March, I was researching some gravestones at the cemetery, and suddenly I was not alone. Some people were walking up the path. In all of my many visits to the place, I’ve never seen anyone there. That’s when I met Jerry Heebner and Liz Jarvis. Jerry is a historian; assigned by the Schwenkfelder Church to clean up the cemetery. Liz is Curator/Archivist for the Chestnut Hill Historical Society. By coincidence they were meeting at the cemetery the same time I was there! Jerry and Liz were meeting to discuss some upcoming tours of the cemetery sponsored by the CHHS. After much discussion about the history of the cemetery, we began to talk about the condition of the place. We noted some of the issues that needed to be addressed and decided that we all should meet to explore a course of action.
We have met several times since then. We have consulted with a cemetery conservationist, masonry expert, arborist, and other professionals. The Schwenkfelder Church has sent out crews to clear out the area for better access. Tours of the cemetery and lectures are being scheduled for the fall. We are developing a preservation plan to serve as a framework for decision-making and fundraising. Anyone interested in helping out is welcome to contact Jack Yeakel via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
It can be tricky to find the Yeakel Cemetery. It is not visible from any roadway and is completely surrounded by private property. The original deeds make provisions for a twelve-foot wide easement, for means of access, from the cemetery to Stenton Ave. (roughly 200 yards away). Currently this land is heavily overgrown. Generally,the easement is located immediately north of the driveway and parking area at 8833 Stenton Ave. and runs parallel to the driveway, down the hill, and up the other side. Be cautious.
My name is Jack Yeakel. I am 42 years old and live in Flourtown PA with my wife and two daughters. I am creating this website to raise awareness for the Yeakel Cemetery.
I first heard about the cemetery while researching my family history. Some family members heard about the cemetery but didn’t know exactly where it was. I discovered its location and first visited the site around 1990. Access was very difficult. I had to bushwack through roughly a hundred yards of dense overgrowth and cross a small stream.
Through the years, in my spare time, I’ve researched the history of the site and have visited many times. Sometimes taking photos. I’ve talked about the cemetery to just about everyone I know and surprisingly few people are even aware this historic place exists. I hope that you will look at the other pages on this site and check back often as I plan on updating this site frequently.