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Elaine Brenchley, First State Heritage Park, 302-739-9194, or Necia Beck, Delaware State Parks, 302-739-9175,

Last First State Heritage Park Cemetery Lantern Tours this Season

DOVER (Sept. 4, 2012) – The First State Heritage Park will offer lantern tours of Dover’s three historic cemeteries this fall. This is the last chance until next spring for visitors to experience these unique tours, which are made possible with the support of the Presbyterian Church of Dover, Christ Episcopal Church and Wesley United Methodist Church.

Presbyterian Churchyard Cemetery
Friday, Sept. 7, 8 p.m. and Oct. 5, 7:30 p.m.
Begins at the Johnson Victrola Museum Parking Lot – 375 S. New Street

Lanterns light this historic cemetery, where many prominent Delawareans and their families are buried. Visitors will meet John M. Clayton, Revolutionary War heroes Colonel John Haslet and Major John Patton along with 19th-century Dover’s James Fulton and several Dover widows with decided opinions about their husbands. 

Old Methodist Cemetery
Friday, Sept. 14, 8 p.m.
Begins at the Johnson Victrola Museum Parking Lot – 375 S. New Street
Stories help reveal the meanings behind the elaborate rituals associated with death and mourning in the 19th century. Visitors are guided past ornately decorated tombstones while varied and often unusual funerary customs of the Victorian Period are revealed including mourning clothes and customs and how methods of preserving the dead were influenced by the Civil War.

Christ Episcopal Churchyard
Christ Church – corner of S. State and Water Streets
Friday, Sept. 28, 7:30 p.m.

Characters from the past tell tales of the tombstones and stories about those who are laid to rest within the walls of the churchyard. Characters from Caesar Rodney’s unrequited love to Civil War opponents buried within yards of one another bring a surprise or two on this unique tour. 

Lantern tours of the Dover Green will also be offered on Fridays, Sept. 21 at 8 p.m. and Nov. 2 at 7 p.m. These tours begin at the John Bell House, 43 The Green in downtown Dover. Admission to all lantern tours is $5. Space is limited; lanterns can be reserved by calling 302-739-9194.

The First State Heritage Park at Dover is Delaware’s first urban “park without boundaries” linking historic and cultural sites in the city that has been the seat of state government since 1777. The park is a partnership of state agencies, under the leadership of Delaware State Parks, working in collaboration with city and county government, nonprofit organizations and the private sector.

Vol. 42, No. 343

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