Founded in 1857, historic Vale Cemetery has been active since. It contains enough land to accommodate burials for the next 300 years. Vale offers traditional burial lots ranging in price from the modestly affordable to the more elaborate. In addition, there is an urn garden where cremains may be buried.
Vale is safe and under continuous video surveillance in nine locations. The video archives are stored at Schenectady Police headquarters where real-time videos are constantly monitored. The videos are in addition to random drive-throughs by Schenectady police.
Vale’s newest offering is “green” (natural) burials in The Dell at Vale. The green burial section is credentialed by the Green Burial Council as it fulfills all requirements for natural burial (i.e., no herbicides, insecticides, or embalming methods). Vale is only the sixth cemetery in the state to be so credentialed.
The Dell itself is “decorated” by nature with wild flowers, plants, and several species of flower and fauna indigenous to Vale. Currently Vale and the Audubon Society are in discussion regarding Vale’s future status as an Audubon-sanctioned site.
The Vale also performs cremation for local and area funeral directors.
Historically, Vale is the final resting place of 33,000 individuals including veterans of wars from pre-Revolutionary French and Indian wars to the Viet Nam war.
It is also the final resting place of a wide variety of accomplished individuals, including inventors, industrialists, civic leaders, African-Americans, and notable women.
Vale isn’t just a cemetery. It is an urban wildlife refuge, a garden, and a showcase for some of the finest examples of stone work produced from the 1800s to today.
Annually, Vale offers tours and lectures from the spring to the fall. They are increasingly popular, drawing larger crowds each year. More recently after years of digital uploading, genealogy information is available online to the public.