Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Update from the St. James Anglican Cemetery project, Carbonear

Last year, Heritage NL was asked by one of our Registered Heritage Structures, St. James Anglican in Carbonear, to give some advice on their cemetery cleanup project (see past blog entries here). A year into the project, they've made great strides to cut back invasive bushes and trees, trim rose bushes, and expose some hidden stones and markers.  A big shout out to Judy Symonds who has taken the lead on this project, and to last year's summer students for their excellent and careful work.

Yesterday, I was back in Carbonear to help give some training on this summer's phase of the project. The cemetery has been partially mapped, with the majority of the pre-1900s graves transcribed. Several plots were left unfinished, and there are quite a few 20th century grave markers that have not been recorded at all. So I worked with their current batch of summer students, and taught them how to use the Marker Record Form designed by the Family History Society.  The goal is to finish recording the south half of the cemetery.

One of the intriguing finds made this year was of a First World War Memorial Plaque (sometimes called a Dead Man's Penny) firmly mounted on concrete. The plaques were issued to the next-of-kin of all British and Empire service personnel who were killed as a result of the war, but it is rare to see one used as a cemetery memorial.

The plaque bears the name William Stephenson, who might possibly be this person:

More to come as research and documentation continue!

If you want to learn more about the process of cemetery transcription, we are holding a Cemetery Transcription Bee Thursday, August 9th, 2018 at 9am in partnership with Logy Bay-Middle Cove-Outer Cove Museum. This combination workshop/documentation project will instruct participants on how to transcribe grave markers. You’ll learn about the DOs and DON’Ts of recording inscriptions, tombstone symbols and stone types, how to fill out cemetery marker forms, and assist the Logy Bay-Middle Cove-Outer Cove Museum in collecting tombstone information at the St. Francis of Assisi RC Cemetery.  Pre-registration required (right here!)

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