Talking Tombstones

About the Production

In the early summer of 2023, Mechanicsburg Museum Association (MMA) asked Cindy to craft a “cemetery walking tour” for a museum fundraiser in the fall. Cindy—a member of the MMA, former MMA board member/employee, devotee of Mechanicsburg history, and playwright—gladly took up the challenge. Upon some research, it seemed many of the town’s early “movers and shakers” were buried in Chestnut Hill Cemetery. The cemetery is one of the area’s most historic landmarks, established in 1862 in Upper Allen Township. Confederate General Albert Jenkins mistakenly thought the cemetery was an entrenched military position and planned an invasion of the town in 1863.

Cindy created eight monologues for Mechanicsburg’s most prominent nineteenth and twentieth century citizens using various printed histories of the town, the Internet, and her imagination. TALKING TOMBSTONES shares the history of the town, including a ghost story surrounding Mechanicsburg’s oldest log building—the Frankenberger Tavern built by George Frankenberger in 1801—to information about a unique Civil War era time capsule that will be opened at the country’s Tricentennial in 2076. There was also some lively “graveyard gossip,” as cemetery residents reveal jealousies and judgments of each other in a fun and conspiratorial way. Participants were challenged to decide which “spirit” best epitomized Mechanicsburg.

An interesting and informative walk through Mechanicsburg’s history… the actors and actresses were awesome!


This was great! Thank you for a wonderful event. Fun and informative! Hope it is back next year!


Very well done — the scripts, the actors, overall idea and the presentation. A fun and unique way to bring history to life again.


Really enjoyed meeting all the Mechanicsburg spirits in the graveyard. Well done by all.