It is not without irony that I write this, but the Mount Moriah Cemetary Association is dead. Literally.
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer,the Association's "last officer died in 2004. The association's last employee abandoned the cemetery - where 5,000 veterans, including 23 recipients of the Medal of Honor, are buried - in 2011."
Unike many nonprofits which "pass away", Cemetary Association owned 200 acres of land and had $20,000 in "savings". If you know anything about operating cemetaries, you will recognize that $20,000 does not buy enough to care for the property and address any new burials. So, when such a nonprofit ends life as it was known, a court judge must decide "what next". In the case of the Cemetary Association, what's next is a new caretaker in the form of a newly formed nonprofit.
Mount Moriah Cemetery Preservation Corp. is the a nonprofit organization, with a seven-member board, that will assume responsibility and report to the court twice a year on its progress in restoring the grounds.
Philadelphia and Yeadon have two seats each on the board of the preservation organization. Those four members elect the three additional members.
The first task is to raise money, Abernathy said: "We haven't set a goal yet, but it's going to be a significant amount."
The board also has to determine the extent of the cemetery's assets, for example, whether the association owns any additional real estate or has equipment that is stored off site.
I am a bit skeptical about the ability of a seven-member nonprofit board to get all that is needed done. Were I the judge I would have looked for another existing Cemetary Association to adopt Mount Moriah and ensure it gets the care it needs. While not impossible, I don't believe a seven-member board has enough resources to do all that needs doing. But perhaps I under-rate the members.