Last updated on 11/03/12

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Spencer Cemetery

Click here to see a list of names on the memorial stone.
Click here to see a D.A.R. listing of the original gravestones.

Spencer Cemetery is located at the north-east corner of Michigan Ave. and Spencer Lane in Ypsilanti Township, Washtenaw Co., MI.  The last date of death marked in Spencer Cemetery was of Thebe Spencer in 1925. 

Willow Run School Administration Buildings are now located on this corner.  

Pat Morbach found out from Martha at Burrell Monuments, there is a stone in-between two large, overgrown evergreen trees.   The stone lists the names of those who were buried at Spencer.  Pat found the stone with great difficulty as the trees and bushes were so overgrown that it couldn't be seen from the street.  She literally had to climb and fight her way through the brush to view the stone.

When Pat showed me the stone, we both felt that we had to do something about this.  I called around in Ypsilanti and the Township.  No one even knew of the cemetery or a memorial stone.  I ended up talking to the Cemetery Licensing Dept. in Lansing, MI.  The information they gave me stated the cemetery was listed as inactive in 1968.  I asked about the memorial stone and where were the gravestones.  They stated that it appears when the Willow Run School Administration Buildings were built, the gravestones were disposed of and the buildings built over the cemetery!  I asked why the graves weren't moved to another cemetery and was told they probably checked and there were no remains left. The bones disintegrated after so many years.  So there would have been nothing to move.  (Hmmm . . .)

Pat and I decided that since no one was going to take responsibly for the upkeep of the memorial stone, that we would.  Lynn Watson-Powers had our bail money handy, just in case.  We went out a couple times and literally hacked our way through all the bushes and trees.  We cleared all the brush so the stone can now be seen from the street. 

I took some before and after pictures:

Spencer before This was taken after we started cutting away some of the brush.  It is very hard to see, but Pat is in the middle of all this, hard at work.  Inside the circle, you can see the top right corner of the memorial stone on the left.  Pat is to the right, in the circle.
This took quite some doing as all we had were hand saws.  We couldn't take out the stump ourselves.  But we cleared away the bushes and cut back the tree limbs, as much as we could.  (There are names on back of the stone too.)

However, when Pat went by here in the second week of August 1999, the stump was gone. The back bush was removed and the trees were all trimmed back.  We are not sure who did this, but thank you! 

Spencer after

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