*** ONLINE AS OF AUGUST 5, 2011 ***
    



Castle View Memorial Gardens - Neshannock Twnp PA

In 1935 the Castle View Burial Park, a community cemetery founded by Ross D. Rosenberger, opened for business on Wilmington Road in Neshannock Township just north of New Castle, Pennsylvania. Rosenberger had been working on opening the large memorial park for the last few years. A few years later a small castle, which provides the park with its name, was added to the property. The beautiful grounds would become known for the strict adherence to flat or “flush” markers.

On August 6, 1937, a special veterans section was dedicated as part of the festivities for the annual convention of the Pennsylvania-based “Society of the 28th Division,” an organization that honors the oldest division-sized unit in the American armed forces. On that day a host of Revolutionary War and War of 1812 veterans were exhumed from other local cemeteries and reinterred at Castle View’s new section. The distinguished U.S. Army Maj. Gen. William G. Price Jr., who commanded the 28th Division from 1920-33, was the honored guest speaker.

Rosenberger passed away in 1958, but his family continued to operate the memorial park. By the early 1970’s the family-run cemetery began to face severe financial difficulty. On May 2, 1977, agents of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) seized the property due to nonpayment of taxes. The owners, Martin and Susan (Rosenberger) Stolpe and Ruth Rosenberger, continued to attempt to work out a solution to the crisis. They were caring and dedicated caretakers but were just in over their heads financially at this point. The sheriff’s office, after several delays, planned a public auction for the cemetery on September 20, 1977, but a buyer stepped forward just before this happened.

A deal was worked out where two men from Jefferson County, Pennsylvania, would purchase the property. Semi-retired funeral director Eugene Smith and his partner Donald Middleton, who had experience restoring two other burial grounds, became the new owners. The dedicated pair immediately undertook plans to finish a partially-completed mausoleum, restore the former lake to its natural beauty, and reestablish the extensive gardens. As part of their overhaul the cemetery’s name was changed to the more fitting Castle View Memorial Gardens.

The non-denominational burial ground is still in use today and is one of the most beautiful such locations in all of Lawrence County. Among the people interred there is Charles “Chuck” Tanner (1929-2011), the major league baseball legend who managed the Pittsburgh Pirates to the 1979 World Series Championship. My Uncle Andrew LaPatka and his wife Mary are also interred in the original mausoleum.

Contact the Castle View staff at (724) 654-0512
Located at #3010 Wilmington Rd, New Castle, PA


The entrance sign to the cemetery. (Mar 2012)


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The “Castle” built in the late 1930’s. Behind it sits the original mausoleum. (Mar 2012) Full Size


An aerial view of a portion of Castle View Memorial Gardens. (c2012)


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The veterans section, centered around a small stone fort, was dedicated in August 1937


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The crypt of my relatives Andrew and Mary LaPatka. (Jan 2012)


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Comment

  1. Some of my records are trapped on a broken computer, but I recall that one of my ancestors was involved with this cemetery somehow, either buried here, or could very well be that my 3rd great grandfather did the marble carvings there. I’m not sure if it’s a mystery I can solve, but I’ll let you know if I find that reference.

    Kim M · 04/07/2012 10:42 PM · #

  2. (EDITOR’S NOTE) Kim, thanks for the information. If you find out anything of interest please let me know. Thanks again! Jeff

    Jeff Bales Jr · 06/11/2012 04:33 AM · #

  3. I grew up in the neighborhood and remember playing in the “castle” portion of the grounds. We had to cross Wilmimgton Rd. to get there but it was worth the journey. Can you imagine 3 10 year old girls having their very own castle and kingdom? Thanks for the memories.

    Amy S. · 01/12/2014 12:40 AM · #

  4. Do you have any information on where the jail came from that is in the cemetery, or why it was put there?

    Joneta Burke · 06/13/2014 06:28 PM · #

  5. I spoke to a woman at the cemetery today about the fort. Because of the bars on the door I originally thought it was a jail. She explained that it is suppose to be a replica of a powder fort, that held gun powder.

    Joneta Burke · 06/17/2014 01:29 AM · #

  6. I spoke to a woman at the cemetery today about the fort. Because of the bars on the door I thought it was jail. She explained that it is suppose to be a replica of a powder fort, that held gun powder.

    Joneta Burke · 06/17/2014 01:30 AM · #