Volunteers make progress restoring historic Black cemetery in Conroe

Volunteers Hunter Pyle and Eddie Pierce, along with missionaries from the Church of Jesus Chirst of Latter-Day Saints, kept the wood chipper going all day to fill the dumpster. (Courtesy John Meredith)
Volunteers Hunter Pyle and Eddie Pierce, along with missionaries from the Church of Jesus Chirst of Latter-Day Saints, kept the wood chipper going all day to fill the dumpster. (Courtesy John Meredith)

Volunteers Hunter Pyle and Eddie Pierce, along with missionaries from the Church of Jesus Chirst of Latter-Day Saints, kept the wood chipper going all day to fill the dumpster. (Courtesy John Meredith)

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There were 38 volunteers Nov. 22 who filled a 40-yard dumpster. (Courtesy John Meredith)
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For the first time in 25 years, there is now a clear view from Dora Armstrong's grave to Martin and Agness Dibbles' graves. (Courtesy John Meredith)
A group of 38 volunteers gathered Nov. 22 at the Conroe Community Cemetery, a historic Black cemetery on North 10th Street, to clear brush and leaves from the tombstones. The cemetery, which was neglected for years, is the burial ground for numerous Black civilians and community leaders, including Luther Dorsey, the only known Buffalo Solider to be buried in Montgomery County, and Mittie J. Turner Campbell, the first principal of the first Conroe ISD school for African American students.

The cleanup effort, spearheaded by Jon Edens, has grown over the years and is now a fully-fledged nonprofit called the Conroe Community Cemetery Restoration Project. Volunteers, including members from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and the Boy Scouts of America, filled the 40-yard dumpster Nov. 22, CCCRP Treasurer John Meredith said.


"It has been an inspiration to see the interest of these young people in the cemetery and their strong work ethic," Meredith said in an email. "They learned about significant contributions made by African Americans to Conroe and Montgomery County in the areas of education, civic life and military service."

The last cleanup of the cemetery this year will be Dec. 5 from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. at 439 N. 10th St., Conroe. More information can be found at https://cccrp.org.
By Eva Vigh
Eva Vigh joined Community Impact Newspaper in 2018 as a reporter for Spring and Klein. Prior to this position, she covered upstream oil and gas news for a drilling contractors' association.