A cleanup is set Saturday for the Dritt Cemetery in new Native Lands County Park. “Presently the cemetery is a tangle of weeds and mile-a-minute vines,” a Susquehanna Gateway Heritage Area release states. Background posts: 400 years ago, John Smith explored Chesapeake Bay and For years, York countians have eyed amazing, destructive Susquehanna River ice jams and Petroglyphs, American Indian carvings, almost forgotten treasure.
Local Native Americans will be cleaning up a historic cemetery at the new Native Lands County Park, in York County, beginning at 8 a.m. Saturday, July 25.
According to a Susquehanna Gateway Heritage Area release:
The park contains the site of last Susquehannock village and its associated cemeteries, and it also contains the Dritt family cemetery.
The Lancaster-York Native Heritage Advisory Council has organized the Dritt Cemetery clean up because it believes all of the burials deserve there need to be respected.
Members of the Dritt/Tritt family have experienced difficulties in maintaining the cemetery over the years… .
The Dritt family was also “native” to the land, York’s eleventh county park. The Jacob Dritt Mansion lies a short distance down the hill from the cemetery.
The stone house that is now the John & Kathryn Zimmerman Center for Heritage and home to the Susquehanna Gateway Heritage Area is believed to have been built in the 1730s or 1740s.
It became known as the “Dritt Mansion” when Capt. Jacob Dritt resided there from 1773 to1817.
Jacob Dritt, who fought with militia from York in the American Revolution, drowned in the Susquehanna River in December 1817. His body was later found on a plantation in Maryland and is believed to have been buried there.
Jacob’s wife, Elizabeth, and seven of their children, are buried in the cemetery.
Six other known burials of Dritt family members spanning four generations are buried there. The last was Emanuel Dritt who died in 1879.
A hiking trail that runs through the park is now open to the public and accessible from the adjacent Klines Run Park.
The cemetery is accessible via a short path from the rear of the Susquehanna Gateway Heritage Area office located at 1706 Long Level Road, south of Wrightsville.
For further details about this public event, click here.
Photos courtesy of Susquehanna Gateway Heritage Area.