Tuesday, March 22, 2011
It Takes a Village
I had an interesting experience during my research of a Sanford/South Berwick family yesterday.
I emailed the contact for the local historical society (oldberwick.org) to ask her a question about cemetery plot receipts in the late 1800's. While waiting for her response, I called the Town Hall. They directed me to the Cemetery Committee. By the end of the day, I was receiving emails from at least three other people in town who were independently trying to locate my information. I had to smile at the immediacy of electronic communication - and the "network." And all without using my Facebook profile!
Note: I've found that cemetery records are available differently in each town. In Salem, MA, while researching my own family, I found there is an office on site at the actual cemetery that holds all the records for plot purchases, going back to the 1800's. (I also found the receipt in my mother's files - helpful - thanks Mom)
South Berwick does not have records for the sale of cemetery plots, but does have records of the exact date of burial of the actual body.
The person I"m researching died in Sanford, Maine, was quickly transported to Topsfield, MA where his original family lived and where he was born, and then was returned to South Berwick, Maine for actual burial, and is listed on a headstone at Woodlawn Cemetery.