08 February 2017

Newspaper + Cemetery = Partnership to Benefit Genealogists


Newspaper + Cemetery = Partnership to Benefit Genealogists

I recently read about how a newspaper (The Petoskey (MI) News-Review) partnering with a cemetery to make archival material more accessible, News-Review, cemetery team up for online archiving project.

A project involving the News-Review and Petoskey’s Greenwood Cemetery aims to boost public access to past news items that help form a local historical record.

The News-Review recently turned over about 10 carloads of its archival material — such as bound volumes and microfilmed copies of newspapers, photos and clip files — to the cemetery, which will use them to expand on its online offerings of local historical materials.

Greenwood superintendent Karl Crawford said the digital archive stems from the cemetery’s efforts over the past three decades to build a comprehensive collection of local obituaries — intended to ensure that all who were interred there are accounted for. Along with online postings of obituaries, Greenwood in recent years began scanning complete local newspaper issues from the past…

In my experience, it’s rare for a cemetery to spearhead an effort such as this.  More typically, large subscription entities (e.g. GenealogyBank, Newspapers.com) have been building their newspaper archives, and sometimes, a local library or genealogy society creates a newspaper database such as what this article discusses.  And, less frequently, you find an individual effort (e.g. Fulton Postcards) to make digitized newspapers available for free. Even with all those efforts, many newspapers are still not digitized!

So, it’s kind of neat to see that there are other relevant entities taking the initiative to preserve not just obituaries and local newspapers.  Do visit the Greenwood Cemetery website, and notice on the left-hand menu that you can select Genealogical Research, Newspaper Research, History Research and more.  You can even access a history file on an individual that was created in support of the cemetery’s history tours! How cool is that ?!?! Essentially, mini genealogies are available on the website of the cemetery where they are buried!


What cemetery do you know of which has gone above and beyond in terms of documenting its inhabitants?

What local project has preserved invaluable records or made more accessible valuable information?







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