Natural Burial Grounds

Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, that “Sleepy” place which serves as the backdrop to Washington Irving’s short story, “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow”, is largely just that – a quiet and sleepy resting place where little seems to ever change. Following the Pocantico River as it meanders through the pristine terrain of the cemetery, one feels like they are in a place lost in a time long gone. One can easily imagine Ichabod Crane following this very path in the legendary story.
Yet, this timeless gem in Westchester County, New York is actually among the most progressive and forward thinking cemeteries in the United States. For in the opening of the “Riverview Natural Burial Grounds”, Sleepy Hollow Cemetery has become part of a very small and elite group of burial places in the country, which afford the deceased a “natural” or “green” burial option.

DeerTo fully grasp the timeliness of this offering, one only has to look at current societal trends toward environmental conservation. This “sleepy” place is an industry leader in reconciling the desire to create a harmonious relationship between people and nature.

In simple terms, traditional burial would usually involve the use of chemical embalming, treated wood or metal caskets, metal or concrete casket liners, and a host of other manmade materials. In contrast, the Riverview Natural Burial Grounds is a sustainable space. No inorganic fertilizers or pesticides are used on this land. There is no embalming. Only untreated biodegradable, natural materials may be used in the construction of the casket or shroud. Even cremation urns must be fabricated of organic materials such as corn starch, salt, or untreated woods.pocantico

The Riverview Natural Burial Grounds overlooks the waters of the Pocantico River, which meander gently just a few steps away. These untouched grounds provide a varied natural terrain.

The Riverview Natural Burial Grounds is the perfect choice for those who seek an environmentally responsible option for the burial of a loved one, or for themselves:

“For over 160 years, meeting the needs of our community has been our priority at Sleepy Hollow Cemetery. Above ground burial in our state-of-the-art Community Mausoleum and traditional in-ground burial are still available. However, we strongly believe that those seeking ‘natural’ alternatives to traditional burial should have that option. We are proud to be among the first in the nation to provide such a space. And, our natural burial grounds are not just a parcel randomly put aside. It constitutes the choicest of locations at Sleepy Hollow Cemetery. It is unmatched in its natural beauty. For those seeking a burial in harmony with the environment, Riverview is the ‘Natural” choice,” said David Logan, president of Sleepy Hollow Cemetery.

For more information contact us at (914) 631-0081 or info@sleepyhollowcemetery.org.