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Meeting held to incorporate upkeep for historic African American cemetery

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BATON ROUGE - Councilwoman Donna Collins-Lewis is hosting a meeting Tuesday evening to discuss ongoing upkeep of the Gilbert Memorial Cemetery, one of the city’s oldest African American cemeteries.

The meeting is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. at Second Baptist Church located at 914 N. Acadian Thruway West.

The primary purpose of this meeting was to discuss officially establishing a corporation with the Louisiana Secretary of State to address the ongoing perpetual care of the historic cemetery. Two meetings have been held over the past two months in an effort to accomplish the goal. Ryan Seidemann from the Attorney General’s Office will direct the process of placing the cemetery in the hands of the corporation.

A Board of Directors for the corporation will also be established during the meeting. With the board in place, documents can be filed with the Secretary of State that will establish The Family and Friends of Gilbert Cemetery. Everyone with a connection to the cemetery is urged to provide assistance in any way they can, along with attending the meeting.

Previous attempts to helping out with protecting the historic resting place have included efforts by family members of the deceased buried there. They were able to raise several thousand dollars over the course of last year.

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