The incident was first reported on Tuesday, and cemetery workers noted yesterday in a blog post that more than 40 separate memorials were knocked over, along with numerous porcelain photographs that were smashed and scratched.
"I have been visiting Green-Wood since 1986, and while I recall some incidents of vandalism, I cannot remember anything on this scale or close to it," wrote one cemetery historian. "Gravestones were pushed over and shattered. Urns were cracked and pushed off their bases. Four marble crosses were toppled — three of them broke into pieces.
The cemetery, a 174-year-old national landmark that serves as a resting place for the likes of Jean-Michel Basquiat, Leonard Bernstein, Samuel Morse, and John La Farge, is protected by high gates and a 24-hour security patrol, which the vandals somehow managed to evade. There is, however, some security footage of the episode, which is currently being investigated by the NYPD's Hate Crime Task Force.
So, this doesn't feel great. Can we cornily (but sincerely) suggest that everyone cleanse their palates from this terrible news day by going out and doing something nice for another human being? Might be a nice change of pace from all this.
Follow Virginia K. Smith on Twitter @vksmith.