Moores Lane Potters Field (Defunct)

Photo added by Hal G. Brown

Moores Lane Potters Field (Defunct)

Also known as New Castle County Cemetery (Defunct)

Location
Moores Lane
New Castle, New Castle County, Delaware, 19720 USA
Memorials 634 added (4% photographed)

Search Moores Lane Potters Field (Defunct):

Moore's Lane Potter's Field/New Castle County Cemetery 1934-1962 (+/-).

This cemetery was designated for both indigent known individuals and unidentified corpses from the Medical Examiner's Office.

It was in use until the early 1960's, when a decision was made to close it in order to make way for highway and industrial construction. All burials from Moore's Lane Potters' Field were disinterred and then reinterred at a different New Castle County Potter's field on Boulden Blvd. The excavations for the construction of the Delaware Turnpike and I-295 were massive and encompassed not only the original Moore's Lane Potters' Field, but many many many acres around the original cemetery, including the original Moore's Farm.

Approximately 3,000 bodies/caskets were reinterred upon arrival at Boulden Blvd, either individually or in a mass grave. The disnternments and reinterments were performed by a local funeral home, under contract with New Castle County. To date, a copy of the contract and detailed information has not been located.

No grave markings or records of exact reinterment locations in the Boulden Blvd site exist. Boulden Potter's field has no markers.

*** While the purpose of find-a-grave is primarily to document the graves stones, the people of this cemetery had just a small numbered stone. Even then, when it was decided that the land was to be put to more "important" use, even the numbered stones disappeared, apparently used as highway fill. The only known documentation of these deaths and burials, is archival death certificates, which are being researched based on year and grave location (New Castle County Potter's field). Fortunately, the existence of these death certificates makes it possible to create a memorial for each individual originally buried at the Moore's Lane Potter's field.

Why? Documentation of this Potter's field (albeit without the benefit of memorial stone images) hopefully restores some level of dignity to those seemingly forgotten, dug-up and placed elsewhere in unmarked graves. It brings to mind a quote from William Gladstone;

“Show me the manner in which a nation cares for its dead, and I will measure with mathematical exactness the tender mercies of it’s people, their respect for the laws of the land and their loyalty to high ideals.”

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Potter’s Fields for New Castle County, Delaware: Timeline

< mid-1880s
Prior to the building of the new Almshouse at Farnhurst in 1884, there was a “Poor Ground” or Potter’s Field for the New Castle County Poorhouse/Almshouse when it was located in downtown Wilmington on Broome Street. The cemetery was on the site currently occupied by the courthouse. The graves were supposedly moved to an unspecified location outside the city.

Mid-1880s to mid-1934
The Potter’s Field for New Castle County was part of the New Castle County Almshouse/Hospital Cemetery [“Cemetery in the Woods at Farnhurst”]. It was used both for residents who died at the Almshouse/Hospital who had no where else to be buried, as well as the NCC Potter’s Field from the mid 1880s to mid-1934. Most of it was covered by the I-295 embankment in the 1960s.

Mid-1934 to 1962
The Potter’s Field for New Castle County during this time period was located at the top of the mostly no-longer-existing “Castle Hill” on the Moore’s Farm off of Moore’s Lane. In 1962, the burials were supposedly all moved to the Boulden Blvd. site so the hill could be excavated for use in the building of I-95.

1962-1978
The Potter’s Field for New Castle County during this time period was located at the Boulden Blvd. site, which was also the repository for the bodies moved from the Moore’s Lane site. It was used from 1962 until 1978, when it was closed.

1978-present
The current Potter’s Field for New Castle County is located adjacent to the Baylor Women’s Correctional Facility behind the Herman Holloway Campus of DHSS. Since the last burial in the DSH Spiral Cemetery in 1983, patients who die indigent at DSH are buried in the Baylor Potter’s Field.


The NCC Potter's field timeline is provided by University of Delaware Professor Katherine Dettwyler. For detailed information as compiled Prof. Dettwyler, please refer to her research page at;

http://farnhurst.weebly.com/

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GPS Coordinates: 39.6905870, -75.5679540

  • Added: 4 Jul 2016
  • Find A Grave Cemetery: #2617034