Hartsdale Pet Cemetery and Westchester County government officials will celebrate the designation by unveiling the National Register plaque in a special celebration that will be open to the public. You are invited to attend this special celebration! Details follow below:
What: Ceremony to celebrate Hartsale being listed in the National Register
When: SATURDAY, OCTOBER 6, 2012 at 1 PM
Where: Hartsdale Pet Cemetery (main gate – Central Avenue entrance), 75 North Central Avenue, Hartsdale, New York 10530
Special Guests include Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner, NYS Assemblyman Tom Abinanti, former Hartsdale Pet Cemetery director Pat Grosso, officials from the International Association of Pet Cemeteries & Crematories and many more!
Also known as the “Peaceable Kingdom,” Hartsdale is the first pet cemetery to be listed in the National Register. Of the 88,000 listed properties, only 2,698 are cemeteries. The Register is administered by the National Park Service under the United States Department of the Interior.
"The special relationship between Americans and their pets dates to the earliest settlements in the country," said Carol Shull, Interim Keeper of the National Register of Historic Places. "The addition of Hartsdale Pet Cemetery to the Register is a fitting way to recognize the long-standing and significant role animal companions have played in our nation's history and culture."
Commenting on the designation, Hartsdale Director Edward Martin, Jr. said, "This is the most important event in the cemetery's 115 years of continual operation. I am pleased that Hartsdale Pet Cemetery will now be counted among America's most treasured historical places, ensuring that it is protected and able to serve future generations.”
"The story of Hartsdale is about the lives of pets and the people who loved them, people from every station in life. Those who choose to bury their pets do so because they want to, not because they have to. They do not care more about animals than humans. They simply are caring people who think this is the right thing to do."
The national designation recognizes Hartsdale's outstanding landscape design and collection of monuments and works of art. Its five-acre hillside still retains much of its 19th-century pastoral flavor, characterized by scenic vistas with mature maples, walnut and hickory trees. The carefully tended grounds are resplendent in color from blooming azaleas, cherry and crabapple trees, attracting a variety indigenous birds and making it a community treasure.
Since 1896, Hartsdale Pet Cemetery has been the final resting place for pets of every description, including all manner of dogs and cats as well as a number of more exotic pets, including a lion who lived at the Plaza Hotel. The plot-holders have included some of America’s most prominent financial and political figures, musicians, artists, and celebrities of stage, screen, and television. In 1986, pet cremation services were made available at the cemetery to address the growing demand for a dignified alternative to traditional burial, and today animal hospitals and veterinarians throughout the Tri-State area refer their clients to Hartsdale for final services.
What started as a quiet summer retreat of a prominent Manhattan veterinarian with a compassionate heart made it a prime location for the final resting place of thousands of beloved family pets. Pioneering animal welfare proponents applauded the creation of the cemetery as a critical social platform for the expression of a growing kinship with nonhuman beings. In the century to follow, over 70,000 interments would take place in the former apple orchard.
Some of the more unique treasures at Hartsdale include a fifty ton above-ground mausoleum, the first and largest of its kind, and the famous War Dog Memorial, which was dedicated after World War I and is the first public tribute to honor military working dogs for their bravery and sacrifice. Other monuments equally notable for the representational animal art and heartfelt inscriptions which grace them are to be found throughout the grounds.
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