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Mount Hope Cemetery

Battlefields & Cemeteries

Mount Hope Cemetery
Rochester, New York

The Mount Hope Cemetery Cultural Landscape Report, Tree Inventory & Management Plan, for the City of Rochester and the Friends of Mount Hope Cemetery is a joint effort of Heritage Landscapes and Wendel Duchscherer.  The rural landscape of Mount Hope Cemetery was dedicated in 1838 and remains the first municipally-owned Victorian-style cemetery in the United States.  The hill and valley topography along the Genesee River shores was ideal for the development of a picturesque landscape of respite and ceremony with dense woodlands, open meadows and dramatically sloping terrain.  Researching and documenting history, evolution, and existing conditions of the cemetery revealed the value, evolution and community commitment to this unique cultural landscape.  A detailed tree inventory, undertaken by Wendel Duchscherer, arborists, identified the remarkable collection of ancient trees and the current tree conditions, to focus tree canopy management recommendations.

Mount Hope Cemetery is a historically significant cultural landscape that continues to accommodate active burials.  The requirement for both preservation and ongoing use of the cemetery grounds directs landscape treatment and management that balances historic character, continued cemetery use and public tours of the historic landscape. An assessment of trees in the cemetery revealed the need for a plan for the continued care and management of site vegetation, which strongly contributes to the picturesque landscape character.  The investigation and documentation process engages cemetery advocates to define feasible initiatives and projects to retain Mount Hope Cemetery as a valuable community space. From this multiple factor basis of historical documentation, field reconnaissance, identification of issues, tree inventory, analysis of character and continuity, and community input, a targeted plan is created that addresses preservation, interpretation, and management recommendations that the City of Rochester can implement in a phased sequence over time.  


City of Rochester

Mount Hope Cemetery Cultural Landscape Report, Tree Inventory & Management Plan, 2008

Project Credits:
Heritage Landscapes, Preservation Landscape Architects & Planners, with Wendel Duchscherer, Architects & Engineers