An Endwell man is raising finds to refurbish the final resting place of the hamlet’s first European settler.
The historic Hooper Patterson Cemetery is located on River Road in Endwell, not far from the Washingtonian Hall, which was built by Amos Patterson in 1799.
The family burial site was used from 1805 to 1910 to bury members of both the Patterson and Hooper families.
David Vallone, who co-owns the nearby David Scott Salon, came upon the cemetery during a walk about ten years ago.
He convinced the Town of Union to allow him to become a caretaker for the graveyard which records indicate has 42 graves but only 28 markers remain, many in disrepair.
Vallone, with the help of other volunteers, has cleared brush, filled animal holes and trimmed trees.
While repairing and restoring the cemetery, he also hopes to better educate locals about the area’s past.
“I really want people to know their local history. It’s very important to me. This was Hooper, New York. And Johnson City wasn’t Johnson City, it was Lestershire. So, there was life here before Endicott-Johnson,” he says.
Vallone is raising funds to repair some of the monuments as well as the wrought iron fence and gates that once fully surrounded it.
He’s established a non-profit called “Save A Cemetery” to take on future projects once the Hooper Patterson restoration is complete.
Vallone is holding a fundraising gala this Saturday from 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm at the Riverdale Banquet Hall on Watson Boulevard, formerly Brothers 2.
There will be butlered hors d’oeuvres and an Italian cheese table plus lots of dancing, including a pair of ballroom dance instructors.
For more information, or to purchase tickets, go to https://HooperPattersonCemetery.org.