Exploring Almost Forgotten Gravesites in the Great State of Ohio

Dedicated to cemetery preservation in the great state of Ohio

"A cemetery may be considered as abandoned when all or practically all of the bodies have been Removed therefrom and no bodies have been buried therein for a great many years, and the cemetery has been so long neglected as entirely to lose its identity as such, and is no longer known, recognized and respected by the public as a cemetery. 1953 OAG 2978."

Monday, October 31, 2011

Sharing a newspaper story about preserving Cleveland's Historic Cemeteries

Click on title to link to a story featured in "The Plain Dealer" that was published today entitled:  "Cleveland will tap endowment to fix historic cemeteries."

It is superbly written by Thomas Ott.  The depth of his presentation will certainly make readers more aware of the plight of Cleveland's cemeteries and their great need for further preservation.  Thankfully, many people have already stepped up to help make it happen for these early burial grounds.

Quoted from the story:

"Cleveland owns 12 cemeteries, 11 of them more than a century old. The cemeteries are home to about 400,000 departed. Only West Park and Cleveland Memorial Gardens, located in suburban Highland Hills, still have gravesites available for purchase."

The Cleveland City website identifies all of the cemeteries with their addresses and links to maps.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

New story about the Make-over of the 150-year old Middletown Cemetery, Middletown, Butler County, Ohio

Here is a heartwarming story from "WCPO.com" of Cincinnati that was posted online on October 24, 2011 about how private donations helped spur along the restoration of the historic Middletown Cemetery. 
A video accompanies the printed story. 
Abstracted from the story:

"If you'd like to donate to the Middletown Cemetery, you can do it through the City of Middletown.

You can send checks, marked for the Cemetery account, to:

City of Middletown
1 Donham Plaza
Middletown, Ohio 45042

9 News will keep you informed about the progress of renovating the cemetery's historic vault house and restoring the many damaged tombstones."

Spotlighting "Tombstone Tuesday" on "Karen's Chatt"

Click on title to link to "Karen's Chatt" and her "Tombstone Tuesday" entries. 

Karen is Karen Miller Bennett. 
Here is her biography information taken from her website:

"I am a Board-certified genealogist, registrar of the Lima Chapter NSDAR, and a past trustee, officer, and committee chair of The Ohio Genealogical Society. My main interests are cemetery research, German research, lineage societies, technology, and the west-central Ohio and east-central Indiana areas. I am also a Registered Dental Hygienist. Look for a variety of blog subjects, from genealogy to my other interests of music, reading, bird watching, gardening, and dentistry."

"I’d love to hear from you! Please send me an email at karen@karenmillerbennett.com."

Karen has a wonderful website!  I know I've enjoyed visiting it.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Saving a small cemetery - A news story about the Alber / Crossview Cemetery in Seven Hills, Cuyahoga County, Ohio

From the "Parma Sun Post" as published online by "Cleveland.com" on January 19, 2011:

"SEVEN HILLS The president of the historical society wants to be sure no unknown graves will be covered when a sidewalk is built on Rockside Road.

The county plans to build the sidewalk on the north side of Rockside, along part of which is the city-owned cemetery, known as Alber Cemetery, or Crossview Cemetery.

The sidewalk is part of a project to repave Rockside beginning in spring 2012.

The county engineer’s office is overseeing the job and is aware some sidewalk would go on land presently used as a cemetery. In December, the city gave the county an easement to land located east of North Crossview Road for the sidewalk. That easement was needed because the front boundary of the cemetery abuts Rockside.

“We are aware it is a cemetery,” Jamal Husani, chief transportation engineer for the county, said.

Judy O’Donnell, president of the Seven Hills Historical Society, said the county should be “extremely cautious because there might be (tomb)stones right there.”

O’Donnell said she launched an effort in the mid-2000s that persuaded the city to enforce ownership of the cemetery and to manage it.

She said Alber Cemetery dates back at least to 1852 and has at least one headstone and at least nine flat stones that likely were bases of headstones no longer there.

“You could pass it by and not know it’s there,” she said of the cemetery.

O’Donnell said the cemetery was more of a cemetery for a church once located next to it, than for a family. She said the real importance of the cemetery was that a Civil War Union veteran named Christian Link was buried there.

According to Husani, the new sidewalk was planned from Rockhaven Drive to Mural Drive, as well as from Broadview Road to Pinnacle Park Drive.

Also planned in the $4.3 million project is a decorative-style traffic signal mast arm at Crossview to be funded by the city, some curb repairs and driveway aprons. New sidewalks will put in where utility poles conflict with existing sidewalks, Husani said.
The cemetery is not the same as a cemetery known as Darrow Cemetery, located farther east by Old Rockside Road."

Currrently, "Find A Grave" has 4 burials for the Crossview Cemetery.

For more about the Alber / Crossview Cemetery, please view the following link from the "Ohio Cemetery Preservation Society" which provides an in-depth history:  http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~ohcps/crossviewreport.html 

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Spotlighting Pleasant Hill Cemetery - Pleasant Hill - Newton Township, Miami County, Ohio

The Pleasant Hill Cemetery, located on the western edge of the Village of Pleasant Hill (Miami County, Ohio), and on the north side of State Route 718, has a 2009 burial listing on the village's website.

Pleasant Hill Cemetery on "Find A Grave" currently has 4,827 interments posted online.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

"Preserving Our Stone Records" - Geauga County Public Library, Chardon, Ohio - Tuesday, November 8, 2011 - 7 p.m. presented by Cheryl McClellan

Fall and Winter are great seasons to attend workshops, seminars, and other programs that offer help and information with cemetery preservation issues. 

Presenting details about one coming up 
from the Geauga County Public Library's website:
"Preserving Our Stone Records"

"Learn how to evaluate, care for, and preserve or replace family tombstones as a legacy for future generations.

Tuesday, November 8, 7:00 to 8:00 p.m., at the meeting of the Geauga County Genealogical Society.

Registration not required.

110 East Park Street
Chardon, Ohio 44024
Telephone: 440-285-7601
Manager: Judith Smith
Fall/Winter Hours
Monday - Thursday - 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Friday and Saturday - 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Sunday - 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Focusing on "Find A Grave's" Frequently Asked Questions & Thanking All Photo Volunteers!

Part of this post is to briefly focus on "Find A Grave's" Frequently Asked Questions

"Find A Grave" currently has 70 million grave records.  We know that the number is somewhat misleading as there are duplicates and errors posted in these numbers.  

"Find A Grave" is a massive site.  Due to its ever growing size, I feel contributors are waiting longer these days for the administrators to answer emails and make revisions that we request. 

I think it is a good idea to review the topics in the "FAQ's" routinely to keep curent with the changes to better understand them and know how they impact us. 

On a brighter note, my faith in "Find A Grave" has been restored this week thanks to the kindness of two photo volunteers who took photographs of gravestones and posted them soon after I submitted my requests. 

I wish to personally thank everyone who has ever taken a volunteer gravestone photograph.  The photograph brings so much joy to the requester and volunteer alike.  

Posting a gravestone photograph on a memorial that previously had none produces a win-win result for everyone.  Because of that photograph, we have more assurance the memory of our friends and loved ones will be properly honored and their lives will not be lost to history.  

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Sharing a message from Ralph Lowell Coleman, Jr. regarding "Find A Grave"

Ralph Lowell Coleman, Jr. wishes to inform others about his decisions regarding posting further memorials on the website "Find A Grave." I am sharing his message here.  

Ralph's biography and contact information on his "Find A Grave"profile page can be accessed by clicking on the title above. 

(a view of part of the Spain Cemetery above adjacent to the Maple Grove Cemetery in Rush Township, Champaign County, Ohio)
"I am no longer personally creating memorials for "Find A Grave." I've never been concerned about the number of memorials I could create...only about those I could accurately create and manage.  I will continue to maintain the memorials which I have created in the past, and to provide assistance to those in need.

I have taken more than 7000 photos of the markers in Maple Grove Cemetery, North Lewisburg, Ohio (about 4700 burials), and Woodstock Cemetery, Woodstock, Ohio (about 1600 burials), and will be happy to provide photos to anyone who is creating memorials on "Find A Grave" for individuals buried in either of these two cemeteries, OR anyone who requests photographs through the "Find A Grave" process. Contact me for assistance if you have a loved one, friend or associate buried in either of these two cemeteries.

There are a great many volunteers on "Find A Grave" who create vast numbers of memorials using only obituary notices. Often, many months or even years go by before photos of the grave markers are added - if ever - to these memorials. I personally believe that every memorial should have a photo of the gravesite marker, if one is available. And, this action should be as soon as possible after the posting of the memorial, regardless of who posts the photo. The gravesite marker sometimes draws attention to error(s) in the memorial text, and vice versa.

Some "Find A Grave" volunteers do not want any gravesite photos attached to their memorials unless they provide their own. Why then does "Find A Grave" have a feature for requesting photos of gravesites and attaching them to memorial pages? I don't believe maintenance implies ownership, unless the creator of the memorial is paying for the memorial to the exclusion of "Find A Grave's" advertising.

I have OFFICIALLY worked with the Board of Trustees of Maple Grove Cemetery and Woodstock Cemetery, Rush Township, Champaign County, Ohio, to officially photograph the cemeteries and transcribe the official records of the cemeteries.

I can thus assist with information regarding individuals buried in these two cemeteries, or photographs of the gravesite markers. 

I have the most extensive databases, created from transcribed original cemetery records, funeral home records, obituaries, and other sources. Even if a name which you are researching does not appear on the "Find A Grave" pages for these two cemeteries (Maple Grove Cemetery and Woodstock Cemetery) I can probably provide you with the available information.  Don't hesitate to ask.

Incidentally, in 2012, the entire databases and photographs for Maple Grove Cemetery and Woodstock Cemetery, Rush Township, Champaign County, Ohio, will be published on the Internet for access by and use of family history researchers. Watch for advance notice of the publication date here."

Ralph can be contacted at:

Ralph Lowell Coleman, Jr. 
1536 Robins Circle
Ogden, Utah 84404

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Update on Dean Cemetery in South Salem, Ross County, Ohio on "Find A Grave"

Scott Andersen has posted more gravestone photographs on "Find A Grave"  that he took during his September, 2011 trip to the Dean Cemetery.  Click on title here to view them. 

There are currently 26 interments posted for the Dean Cemetery on "Find A Grave." 

Expressing thanks again to Scott and his wife, Venus, for all of their hard work at the Dean Cemetery, and for documenting so many of the markers there before they either disappear or become completely unreadable. 

Friday, October 14, 2011

Reporting Extensive Vandalism damage at the Hillsboro Cemetery in Hillsboro, Highland County, Ohio

Click on title to link to an October 9, 2011 story published in the "Highland County Press" about recent vandalism damage of at least 50 gravestones at the Hillsboro Cemetery in Hillsboro.

A follow-up story ran on October 12, 2011 with an offer of a reward of $1,250 for information that leads to the arrest of those who are responsible for the destruction.

"All calls will be kept confidential.

Please call Sgt. Ron Priest at the Hillsboro Police Department at 393-3411."

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

"Ohio associations clean up national cemeteries" -

For the full story, and the link to volunteer, click on title. 

Below are a few paragraphs abstracted from the story:

"Since 1994, the Ohio Lawn Care Association, through its generous membership, has devoted countless hours and materials to the task of beautifying the hallowed grounds at the Dayton National Veterans Cemetery in Dayton.

ONLA is teaming up with OLCA to reach out to all members to join the organizations on Saturday, Nov. 12 for this greatest of events "A Grateful Embrace.” This year the organizations have added another site that is in great need of help. The "Ohio Western Reserve Cemetery” in Rittman, Ohio will experience its inaugural event by the same name and will run simultaneously with the Dayton project.

There will be doughnuts and coffee for volunteers upon their arrival and lunch upon completion of the day’s work. Promptly at 9:00 am, there will be a short ceremony at each venue capturing the spirit and humbleness of the event which will include guest speakers, Honor Guard and Benediction. Most of the materials (fertilizer) will be provided through the donations of industry suppliers; however OLA is asking that those who can donate five bags of fertilizer to the cause as well.

Attendees will need to bring spreaders, blowers and all of the manpower they can muster to help get 160 acres of turf fertilized on that day.

Arrival and check in times for each event will be 7:00 am and work should be completed by noon."
On "Find A Grave":

Monday, October 10, 2011

Spotlighting Mayfield Union Cemetery - Mayfield Village, Cuyahoga County, Ohio & The Mayfield Township Historical Society

Click on title to access the Mayfield Union Cemetery information contained on the Mayfield Village, Ohio website. 

Also, the Mayfield Township Historical Society holds records for the Mayfield Union Cemetery at the Mayfield Township Historical Society Museum located at:
606 S.O.M. Center Road
Mayfield Village, OH 44143
For further information: 440.461.0055

Mayfield Union Cemetery currently has 462 burials listed on "Find A Grave"

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Prayer Books

Prayer Books

"Grave Addiction" is on Facebook!

Please check out Beth Santore's "Grave Addiction" site on "Facebook"! 

Some of its most recent photographs include those showing the cleaning and stone resetting work as it was done in progress at the Evangelical Lutheran Cemetery in Somerset, Perry County, Ohio on October 8, 2011.  

Abstracted from the description:

"On October 8, 2011 the Ohio Chapter of the Association for Gravestone Studies partnered with Historic Gravestone Services of New Salem, MA and the Perry County Historical Society to host a gravestone conservation workshop at the Evangelical Lutheran Cemetery in Somerset, Ohio."

Also, please note the "Ohio Chapter of the Association for Gravestone Studies" has their own "Facebook" Page where the photographs can also be viewed.

Beth has done an outstanding job of promoting cemetery preservation in Ohio through her own website of "Graveaddiction" and the "Ohio Chapter of the Association for Gravestone Studies".   

She has visited many Ohio cemeteries; both large and well-known, and small and little known, taking pictures of gravestones. 

Being extremely knowledgeable on the subject of gravestone symbolism, Beth includes explanations of the meanings conveyed by the various symbols carved in gravestones.  Understanding what the symbols represent can help us better identify the religious and other affiliations connected to the deceased during their lifetime.
From the "Ohio Chapter of Gravestone Studies" Website:

"General Information"
"For more information, please contact Beth Santore at graveaddiction@gmail.com"

Friday, October 7, 2011

Sharing a Newspaper story about the Putnam Cemetery, Devola, Muskingum Township, Washington County, Ohio

Sharing a link to a story by the Marietta Times in Marietta, Ohio that was published today online (click on title) about the Putnam Cemetery and its history dating back to 1820. 

Many early settler names are included among those who were buried there including Putnam, Barker, Russell, and Devol. 

Currently, there are 514 burials posted for the Putnam Cemetery on the website: "Find A Grave." 
One famous interment is listed.  It is for Major Israel Putnam. 

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Moore's Chapel Cemetery and the Shaw Family - Bath Township, Summit County, Ohio

Click on title to read a story published on September 15, 2011 on "Akron.com" about the Moore's Chapel Cemetery in Bath Township, Summit County, Ohio. 

On September 10, 2011, an Ohio Historical Marker was unveiled honoring the Shaw family buried there. 

The cemetery name on the marker is "Shaw Cemetery."

Per the article, Constant Shaw came to Bath Township after his sons Samuel (in 1829) and Sylvester (1832). 

On October 6, 2011, a follow up newspaper story was published in the West Side Leader - "Bath Trustees thank historical marker donors"

Moore's Chapel Cemetery is also known as Morris Chapel Cemetery or the Shaw Cemetery. 

It is cross-referenced on "Find A Grave" with the nod given to Morris Chapel Cemetery

Currently, 11 interments are listed for it on "Find A Grave."

On "Ohiogravestones.org" The Moore's Chapel Cemetery currently lists 23 burials with gravestone photographs.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Remembering Steven Paul Jobs - Born: February 25, 1955 -- Died: October 5, 2011

The title links to Steve Jobs' memorial posted today on "Find A Grave" -- "Find Famous Graves" Section. 

Most of us were aware of just how sick of a man Steve Jobs was in the last few years of his relatively young life.  

Today, he was granted eternal peace and freedom from his pain.  

Steve Jobs left a legacy as grand and far reaching as any inventor from this century or the last that we might bring to mind.  

His spirit now circles the heavens with the likes of Edison, Ford, and Bell, whose inventions reshaped the daily lives of untold millions during their lifetimes and for future generations of people they never got to meet.

May you Rest in Peace now and always Mr. Jobs. 
Your earthly work is finished.
A poem for your journey:

"The Dash" - By Poet Linda Ellis

Woodlawn Cemetery - Toledo, Lucas County, Ohio - Walking Tour - Sunday, October 9, 2011 - 1p.m.

Click on title to link to the "ToledoBlade.com" column about the upcoming walking tour of Woodlawn Cemetery in Toledo on Sunday, October 9, 2011 beginning at 1:00p.m. per the story. 

From the "ToledoBlade.com" website:

"The walking tour is to conclude with refreshments and an opportunity to talk with the guides and re-enactors."

Please Note:
**"The walking tour is free. Registration is requested by Friday by email to mail@historic-woodlawn.com or by calling 419-472-2186."

Spotlighting "Tombstone Travels" - Saturday, October 22, 2011 - Logan, Hocking County, Ohio

Click on title to link to the Home Page of "Tombstone Travels"

From the main page of "Tombstone Travels":
Logan, Ohio - in the beautiful Hocking Hills of southeast Ohio...
The past comes alive in the Old Logan Cemetery as costumed interpreters regale audiences with tales of the forefathers and foremothers of Logan Ohio. Guided tours begin at 4 pm, 6 pm and 8pm. Tickets are $10 each.