New Casper Creek Natural Cemetery Protected by Natural Land Institute

“An alternative to traditional burial that memorializes and honors your loved ones and leaves a conservation legacy on the land.”

The new Casper Creek Natural Cemetery, located at 870 South Pilot Knob Road in Galena, Illinois, will be protected in perpetuity with a Conservation Easement held by Natural Land Institute (NLI), an accredited conservation land trust based in Rockford, Illinois.

The 16 acre property is owned by Jo Daviess Conservation Foundation (Elizabeth, Ill.). The conservation burial ground will be operated by the Casper Creek Natural Cemetery Company and meets the standards of the Green Burial Council. Only natural, biodegradable remains (full body and cremated) and materials will be allowed. In addition to grave stones and plots, the cemetery will have a memorial grove and wall.

NLI holds a Conservation Easement to protect the conservation values of the property while allowing for this type of burial ground use. Conservation values include natural communities, water quality, recreational and educational uses, and open space for scenic enjoyment. NLI’s efforts to protect the property with a conservation easement was funded by the Brubaker Charitable Trust.

The Jo Daviess Conservation Foundation donated the Conservation Easement and stewardship fund for NLI to monitor and defend the easement in perpetuity.

The site is a natural area with mesic upland forest, cool-season grassland to be planted in prairie, and stream. Temporarily, the cool-season grasses will be hayed until prairie replaces the hayfield. The Natural Cemetery will also be used for nature observation, bird watching, hiking, and cross-country skiing. Paths, foot trails, and pedestrian bridges will allow people to walk around the property.

For more information about Casper Creek Natural Cemetery call 815-677-3411 or visit their website at

Español »