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Headstone Cleaning and Repair

One of SAC’s preservation efforts under development is to do work on selected restoration projects, including cleaning headstones and repairing minor issues with headstones. This work is done on an as-needed basis or as requested by families as time permits and is based on the availability of limited SAC funds and resources. There is no charge, however donations are appreciated.

Many gravestones at Oakwood are covered with lichens, fungus, and mold – which unfortunately are eating away at the minerals in the stones and damaging these historical monuments. Fortunately, there is now a cleaning product, D/2 Biological Solution, which can safely remove these environmental hazards to stop further deterioration. Other stones have been damaged by vandalism or storms and need to be repaired to prevent further damage to the stones or to its surroundings.

Descendants: If you are a descendant and you would like to submit for your ancestor gravestones to be cleaned and/or repaired, please complete the Repair Permission Form. Please note that SAC can only consider simple repairs on monuments under 6’ tall, however we can refer you to a professional conservator for more complex repairs.

Other SAC Members and Friends: In the case of abandoned property in which there are no known descendants or none are in the Austin area, SAC will work with the guidelines set forth by the Texas Historical Commission and the Association for Gravestone Studies. If you would like to sponsor the preservation of a monument, please consider a donation and specify how you want the funds used.

Everyone: Email us info@sachome.org if you want to join our headstone cleaning team.

Sample Cleaning Projects: The photos depict headstones before cleaning, after initial cleaning, and 2 months after cleaning. A gravestone will typically improve after the initial cleaning, but it often takes a month or longer for many of the substances on and in the stone to be flushed from the stone. After D/2 is applied, it also prevents the hazardous biologicals from reattaching for several years.

Before Cleaning After Initial Cleaning 2 Months Later
Theis-1-(1876),-pre-cleaning Theis-2,-after-quick-cleaning Theis-3,-2-months-after-cleaning
Newmann-1,-pre-cleaning Newmann-2,-after-quick-cleaning Newmann-3,-Anna-Sophia-(1889),-2-months-after-D2-cleaning

More information about D/2 Biological Solution