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."

Thursday, April 20, 2017

New! Greenfield Historical Society Volunteer Work Session Set for Saturday, May 27, 2017 - Beginning at 8:30a.m.

Sharing .... A hands-on volunteering opportunity to learn and participate alongside members of the Greenfield Historical Society in Greenfield, Highland County, Ohio, who have been working since 2014, to restore their village's "Old Burying Ground."  

**Reply directly to the Greenfield Historical Society with any questions, or to volunteer.**:

The volunteers will be cleaning, repairing, and resetting gravestones.  

Please share this message with others who might be interested. 
From the Greenfield Historical Society:

"Please join other volunteers as we continue to make improvements to the Old Burial Ground

"Our first session of 2017 will be May 27th. 

We'll start at 8:30 a.m. and work as long as we have the energy.

Please join in the fun and start your Memorial Day weekend with some exercise! 

Stay as long as you can. 

Thanks for your help and support." 
**Photos below from previous work sessions"

Monday, April 17, 2017

Sharing News that Brings New Hope for Preservation of Smaller Champaign County Ohio Cemeteries!

There is new hope on the horizon for the smaller Champaign County Cemeteries thanks to several Champaign County groups and individuals who are working together to preserve, restore, and document them.  

To learn the full story:

Click HERE to read the latest news report as published in the "Urbana Daily Citizen" online on April 16, 2017.  
I have ancestors buried in Champaign County; some in smaller cemeteries such as the Friends Cemetery and the Butcher (AKA Walnut Grove Cemetery) in North Lewisburg.  

The Butcher Cemetery, in particular, has been neglected for years; receiving minimal grounds cleaning a few times a year.  Several trees are scattered on grounds of the Butcher Cemetery; and hence many large limbs and branches have fallen down over the years causing some larger monuments to be toppled over and broken.  The tree branches are left where they fell or tossed to the back of cemetery.  Military markers for veterans are sinking out of sight. 

I look forward to reading follow-up progress reports on this joint effort -- hopefully much improvement will be accomplished for the almost forgotten Champaign County cemeteries where too much history has already been lost. 
Below are a few of my photos taken in June of 2015 while visiting the Butcher Cemetery in North Lewisburg.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

"Bond Revoked for Owner of Grandview Memorial Park Cemetery in Ravenna, Ohio"

Sharing this most recent news story about the Grandview Memorial Gardens Cemetery in Ravenna, in Portage County.  It is from the "Record-Courier"newspaper in Kent, Ohio. 

Here is a paragraph excerpt from this news story published online on April 13, 2017.:

"Portage County Prosecutor Victor Vigluicci said Wednesday that his office continues to pursue criminal charges related to the Martins' alleged failure to comply with Ohio cemetery law, including allegedly failing to make annual filings, keep accurate business records and maintain the cemetery's trust account. Delaware County prosecutors are handling the multiple theft charges referring to crimes affecting as many as 44 victims. “Preying on the elderly and emotionally distraught is cruel,” the Delaware County Sheriff’s Office wrote March 7 on its Facebook page after the Martins’ criminal charges were announced. The Martins “have scammed dozens, if not hundreds, of innocent victims who paid for burial plots, vaults, and headstones for loved ones.”
The Ohio Attorney General's Office also has sued the Martins for alleged violations of the Ohio Consumer Sales Practices Act for failing to provide more than $36,000 in merchandise to at least 26 customers."
There are 2,762 interments at the Grandview Memorial Gardens cemetery listed on the website "Find A Grave."
The ongoing corruption issue also affects the Fairview Memorial Park Cemetery in Delaware County in this corruption case.   

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Jason Church's Bardstown, Kentucky Cemetery Workshop Attracted 50 Participants from Several States.

Jason Church is a well-respected gravestone conservation professional with the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training (NCPTT). 

Fortunately for those who wish to learn proper "Do No Harm Best Practices" for cleaning, repairing, and resetting grave markers, Jason Church conducts hands-on training in workshop settings.  

On Friday, April 7th, 2017, the Bardstown, Kentucky cemetery preservation workshop conducted by Mr. Church was filled to capacity with participants; some who traveled from other states, including Ohio.  This was the most attended workshop for historic preservation of any type held in Bardstown thus far this year.     
Click HERE to read the whole story!
Click HERE to link to several of Jason Church's cemetery / gravestone videos.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Calvary Cemetery, Lorain Ohio - April 9, 2017 - Unexpectedly Finding a long-lost friend Touched My Heart.

Sharing my photos of myself and Joan D. (Szczepankiewicz) Stevens of Lorain taken at Calvary Cemetery in Lorain, Ohio on April 9, 2017.  
While at Calvary Cemetery in Lorain, I decided its time to visit the gravesite of some of my Szczepankiewicz family members from my maternal grandmother's family.  Specifically, Stanley Szczepankiewicz and his wife Sophie's gravesites. 
While walking toward the gravestone, I immediately saw a lady finishing up decorating it with Easter flowers.  I decided to walk up and ask her if she is Joan Stevens, the daughter of Stanley and Sophie, whom I had written to over the years but not received recent replies from, unfortunately.  She said she was indeed Joan Stevens, so we struck up a conversation and I told her about my maternal great-grandmother's gravesite in another section that she said she had never visited before.  I mentioned that if she had time to follow us there, I would show it to her.  My maternal great-grandmother is Antonina Szczepankiewicz.  So we stopped at my ancestor's gravesite where my husband took our photo standing by it.  Afterward, we drove up to another section of the cemetery to visit the gravesites of Joan's grandparents Antoni and Victoria (Krokos) Szczepankiewicz.  Antoni and Antonina were siblings. 
Meeting Joan so unexpectedly certainly was the highlight of my day.  She is such a remarkable person that at age 85 and after overcoming major health issues, still drives out to decorate her parents' gravesites.  I pray she is able to continue with her visits for many years to come. 

Friday, April 7, 2017

Lorain County Chapter of the Ohio Genealogical Society - "Coroner’s Inquests” - A presentation by Tom Neel" - Monday, April 10, 2017 - 7:00p.m.

Sharing an announcement of the upcoming meeting of the Lorain County Chapter of OGS.:
The meeting is open to non-members as well as members of the chapter.:
"I would like to invite those of you who are available to attend our next monthly meeting which will be held this coming Monday April 10th.
The meeting will be held at the North Ridgeville Branch of the Lorain County Public Library, 35700 Bainbridge Road, with the social time beginning at 6:30 PM followed by our business meeting and the presentation at 7:00 PM.
Our presentation is “Coroner’s Inquests”, presented by Tom Neel covering looking for genealogy information in the Coroner’s Inquests
Please join us Monday, and bring a friend,"
John Kolb
LCC-OGS Secretary

Sharing an Updated Post by Amy Johnson Crow - " 5 Photos You Should Take at the Cemetery"

It is my pleasure to share a link to Amy Johnson Crow's latest blog post entitled:

Be sure to click on the orange box with the message: 

"Want to take better photos in the cemetery?  Click here for a free guide with 5 of my favorite tips." 

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Spotlighting the NCPTT - National Center for Preservation Technology and Training

It is my pleasure to share this video presented by the NCPTT entitled:  

Jason Church of the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training conducted the workshop.