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Bayside Cemetary: Rememberance Overgrown
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In this case, its the Jewish Eastern European community that once dominated East New York; where Jewish mobsters once held sway, and where my own family got their start in America—bakers, not gangsters. But they are all gone now, and likewise their memory fades, even the memory of their memory.
Bayside Cemetery is part of an huge grouping in East New York--just off the A-Train, you have probably seen it before on the way to JFK.
Unlike its neighboring cemeteries, all maintenance ceased sometime in the early 1990s—from what I can tell. Nature took over from there.
The story of how this cemetery was forgotten is very indicative of the shifting fate of ethnic communities in NYC. You can read more about that here: www.indypressny.org/article.php3?ArticleID=408.
But I am posting about what is, and what will be, not what was.
As Allen Weisman’s new Book, the World without Us, discusses, nature is swift and covers our tracks in no time at all. www.wnyc.org/shows/lopate/episodes/2007/07/10
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CartLegger: 12th Jul 2007 - 17:16 GMT
PS: Its easy to get in if you want to see it.
little ukraine: 12th Jul 2007 - 21:37 GMT
awesome post, thanks for sharing. you seem to hit really interesting, incredible places. do you find them as a result of endless roaming (in brooklyn i suppose you can find an 'interesting' place every five blocks or so) or are you guided by things you hear around town, like the publications you cite? either way, thanks for taking the initiative.
CartLegger: 13th Jul 2007 - 03:03 GMT
Thanks. I've been seeing this place for years. But I thought "you could never get in there, gotta be a fence."
But no. I was surprised to learn that just sort of walk right in--well, next door and through the woods.
The links were garnered post experience, as I tried to make sense of what I was seeing.
Go see it for yourself. Who knows what sense you might make of it.
CartLegger: 13th Jul 2007 - 12:25 GMT
Do you mean the center strip of the cemetery as viewed from google maps?
On the ground, in the bush, this thing has no center. It is all sprawl. It is huge, going on for unknown acres.
anon (cache-ntc-ab09.proxy.aol.com): 17th Jul 2007 - 12:21 GMT
I just found out last night that my great grandfather,
Anthony: 23rd Jul 2007 - 03:16 GMT
The overgrown condition is not the only problem. Many of the crypts have been broken into. I went for a walk in the cemetery about 3 years back and I found a crypt with the surname Moses on it down the main walkway. The door glass had been painted black to keep people from seeing inside but the paint was falling off and inside you could see the broken marble wall and wood casket with the remains inside it as plain as day. I was told by the caretaker that there are many like this some even worse and remains have been found even on the ground in some cases, and at one point the had begun to place the bodies from the wrecked cakets into plywood boxes. When I visited, Morman volunteer had begun to try to clean it up but I dont think they were prepared for what they found as they went deeper. Its really sad, these people were once somebodys mom or dad, no different than us and now they cant even rest in dignity
Frank: 24th Aug 2007 - 23:05 GMT
Do you know if it's open on Sundays? We may try and go this weekend...
Frank: 29th Aug 2007 - 01:53 GMT
For the record, there are two entrances open on Sundays. One is at the south end of Mokom Sholom cemetery (the western strip) and the other is at the north end of Acacia cemetery (the eastern strip). Bayside is the center strip, and accessible from both if you don't mind walking through underbrush. Both gates' signs say they close at 4 PM.
Jim: 26th Oct 2007 - 02:35 GMT
I've just come to know that I my great, great, great Grandmother is buried at Mokom Sholom. It is my understanding that they now keep the gates locked at all times and that, if you want to visit, you need to make an 'appointment' to get in.
Maude: 17th Nov 2007 - 06:40 GMT
I just found out my husband's gg-GPs are buried here. I read online that a Mormon guy was mounting a huge clean-up effort here in 2003. What happened to that? This is so sad. Did you find any gravestones marked Rosenstein by any chance?
Zoni: 19th Nov 2007 - 04:49 GMT
I'd tell you more, Maude, but you left no contact info on your Find A Grave page. Give me a way to get in touch and I will.
DYL: 17th Dec 2007 - 23:38 GMT
Really great photos. It's postings like this that make me love this site. Urban exploration and the resulting discoveries can be haunting but rewarding as demonstrated by these photos. I cant help but mourn those forgotten family members, while still feeling hopeful that they are feeding the new life of the resulting forest.
Michael: 4th Jan 2009 - 05:33 GMT
There is a family connected in marriage to mine whose relations are buried there. This family has a business which sits on the stock exchange. Maybe they would be interested to know that one member has their stone overturned and the other is behind quite an entanglement of weeds.
Sean Hopkins: 18th Feb 2009 - 22:54 GMT
Great post man. I'm the Con Ed guy that reads the meter there. That's how I discovered it. I asked the grounds keeper if I could take a stroll and he had no problem with it. It is quite an experience and I mean to take my camera there next week when I'm back there for the meter. Haunting.
Sir Percy: 22nd Apr 2009 - 00:53 GMT
To the title of the post, it's not creepy. It's beautiful and peaceful. Stop watching stupid movies.
Barry Wiseman: 13th Feb 2010 - 00:51 GMT
Why don't someone contact the news media,also get students to help clear away the over grown plants and weeds,making sure they all wear rubber gloves to protect one from poison ivy thaI heard is there!
AFGroh: 2nd May 2010 - 00:58 GMT
My grandparents are here, has anyone been there recently. I see Feb.. Im heading there next month and was wondering how its been. I truly hope that the stones are intact.
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