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Historic cemetery in town of Onondaga restored

A key piece of local history that has been saved for generations by restoration has been rededicated in a special ceremony.
Town of Onondaga (WSYR-TV) - A key piece of local history that has been saved for generations by restoration has been rededicated in a special ceremony.

A Revolutionary-War era cemetery on a hillside on the Onondaga Community College campus had gone largely forgotten until recently.

"When I first saw it, it was an overgrown patch of woods, but I think the potential has always been there,” said Dick Case, who led the restoration effort.

Among those buried in the cemetery is General John Ellis – a veteran of the American Revolution who is credited as one of the first settlers in Onondaga County and the town of Onondaga.

One of his distant relatives, Robert Ellis, was among those at the rededication ceremony.

"It’s a wonderful thing that they've done. I know the full family, even as broad a part of the family as I am, are very pleased they've done this,” Ellis said.

A wrought-iron fence that surrounds the ground was restored and original headstones have been pieced back together, cleaned, and properly placed.

"It’s a nice site and I thought they did a wonderful job of restoring it,” Ellis said.

In addition to the ground itself, the town is installing a sign to alert passersby to the cemetery.

"I thought that since it had survived it deserved to be improved and it is definitely improved,” Case said.

With the cemetery rediscovered, OCC students and faculty have been visiting the site as part of a classroom study.

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