Fund drive launched for historic church, cemetery

Posted: Aug. 13, 2017 12:01 am

SANDYSTON — The Bevans Cemetery Association, as a means of raising money to make the needed repairs to the historic Bevans Church and its equally historic cemetery and accompanying grounds, has launched a fund drive.

Jo-Ann Williamson serves as president of the Bevans Cemetery Association, which owns both the church and the churchyard. Patte Frato, president of the Sandyston Township Historical Society, says that the society endorses the fundraiser due to the historical nature of both the church and the surrounding churchyard.

One of the items that are badly in need of repairs is the church driveway. Frato says that this driveway was originally the road that went right past the front door of the church. She guesses that when the cemetery was enlarged, rather than have the cemetery bisected by a public road, the road was realigned to go around the cemetery. The far end of the driveway is partially washed out and is the section that needs the most help.

As for the church itself, Williamson says that the cemetery association is seeking help to repair the slate roof, to purchase paint, to have the church painted, and have the 25 sets of shutters replaced. If funding becomes available, the association members would also love to have needed repairs done to the interior of the church.

Williamson says that cemetery is still in use and that burial plot is available. While the congregation itself has long since disbanded, the church is used for special events such as weddings and the annual Christmas Eve service.

Frato, who serves as historian for Sandyston Township, provided historical information about the church and the cemetery.

The Dutch Reformed Church at Peters Valley was a branch of the Minisink Dutch Reformed Church, which was organized in 1737. Initially, four small crude churches were built that were located along the Delaware River. One was built in Smithfield, Pa., while the others were…

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