Saving Boyd Carter Memorial Cemetery

The Boyd Carter / Kearneysville Methodist Cemetery is an African American cemetery located on Granny Smith Lane in Kearneysville, WV. 

The cemetery has been referred to as Boyd Carter Cemetery, Stewart Chapel Methodist Cemetery, Methodist Cemetery of Kearneysville, and Jefferson Orchards Cemetery. Sometimes the graveyard is referred to as two separate cemeteries, although they are on the same plot.

The cemetery has at least 78 known burials. The first known burial in the cemetery was in 1904 and the most recent burial was in 1999. There are some graves with only markers and no discernible text. There are several United States military war veterans buried there. There are also many unmarked graves. A list of known burials can be found here:

While the cemetery has fallen through the cracks of time and much maintenance is needed, it is not an abandoned cemetery. Relatives of those who are buried there still visit their loved ones, and frequently leave mementos and tributes which are visible throughout the property.

There are concerns that the cemetery could be significantly affected by several impending industrial construction projects. Recent project maps have shown discrepancies in the shape and size of the cemetery with respect to the scope of nearby projects, as well as construction components (possibly utility lines) that could encroach upon the cemetery and penetrate its boundaries.

Boyd Carter / Kearneysville Methodist Cemetery is not abandoned and these construction projects must respect the boundaries and human remains of this cemetery!  

We would appreciate funds to help with legal assistance, to build a permanent  sign, help with supplies, hiring a lawn maintenance to clean up the cemetery, so the community  and families can maintain it and repair headstones and obtain new markers, etc. 

This seems to be happening in other areas as well. But we have to take a stand to protect, preserve and sustain our burial grounds.  We are on Facebook: 

My involvement to Boyd Carter: 
Who you are-I am a retired from Piedmont Housing Alliance a nonprofit in Charlottesville, VA. I am also a Professional Genealogist and adjunct professor for Averett University in VA.

Where you're from (I live in Palmyra VA, just outside of Charlottesville, 2.5 hours from Jefferson Co. WV where the cemetery is located. My ancestors are from this area and I visit on a regular basis. 

Your relationship to the parties you're raising funds for: I am a descendants of some of the folks buried in the Boyd Carter Cemetery. We have a small team that is researching and are advocates of preserving the cemetery. 

How the funds will be used (be specific as possible) to assist with legal fees, buying supplies, we need 5 more cameras to put around the cemetery, the pipeline people are now working in the evening and we need to continue to monitor the area via cameras. We also have some advocates camping at the site as well. Being able to pay for the flyers and we are putting in an order to have a cemetery sign built, couple benches and a sign to recognize the military that are buried in the cemetery. 

If you intend to withdraw the money, how you plan to send the funds to the parties you're raising money for or use the money on their behalf. Yes will need to withdraw the funds and write a check or use cash pay the vendors for items. I will personally deliver which ever or pay on line if the vendor has the option. 
Thank you!
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    • $75 
    • 31 mos
  • Carmen Rodgers
    • $10 
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  • Sarah Adams
    • $35 
    • 33 mos
  • Anonymous
    • $25 
    • 33 mos
  • Theodore Welti
    • $10 
    • 33 mos
See all


Shelley Murphy
Palmyra, VA

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