Follow KDKA-TV: Facebook | Twitter

MUNHALL (KDKA) — A new mayor took over Tuesday night in the Borough of Munhall.

And, one of Mayor Rick Brennan’s first duties was to swear in a new board of directors for the historic 140-year-old Homestead Cemetery, which has fallen on hard times.

In recent years, the 34-acre cemetery, which contains thousands of graves, including the graves of several dozen civil war soldiers, has had no ownership and no caretaker.

The cemetery was forced to close its gates for future burials, because there was no owner to sell new cemetery lots to.

Cleaning and maintaining the graveyard most recently had been left up to volunteers, but last summer, they said they could no longer continue with the upkeep.

Tuesday night, at a Munhall Council meeting, Mayor Brennan administered an oath of office to four new cemetery board members, who will work pro-bono, to help put the cemetery back in business.

Brennan said now the hard work will start, with fundraising and renewed efforts to get the state to play a bigger roll in maintaining smaller cemeteries, like the one in Munhall.