When Joel and Maria Brandow took ownership of 350 acres, they knew the land contained an Indian burial ground, but the exact location was never recorded. In 1847 when one of the Brandow children died, they chose a burial site set on top of a hill overlooking the wetland and prairie. It was beside the old Indian trail which was becoming the main highway to the growing town of Alden. The little one acre site became the first cemetery for Alden for several decades. At the time the "1885 History of McHenry County Illinois" was written, bodies were supposedly being moved to Alden Cemetery. However by 1928 there was still talk of grave removals, evidently a slow and perhaps incomplete process. Certainly the stones remaining at this cemetery are not for persons known to be reburied at Alden or any other nearby cemetery. The cemetery was abandoned in 1885.
Although all the stones are down and appear to have been moved from their original location, they have been carefully marked by the McHenry County Conservation District. The land is currently being restored to the original oak savannah ecosystem as a part of the Alden Sedge Meadow. Small Waters Education, a nonprofit group is educating people about the almost-extinct ecosystem and the story of this cemetery.
GPS Coordinates: 42.46194, -88.50321
- Added: 14 Oct 2007
- Find A Grave Cemetery: #2235655
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