Sunday, October 14, 2012

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Longest Gravestone Line

Last night (yes, I'm tardy) Randy Seaver over at Geneamusings asked us to find our longest unbroken gravestone line.  

I really liked this challenge, but struggled a bit initially with how best to determine which line really was the longest unbroken.  Anecdotally, I could think of several possibilities, but turned to my genealogy software to help me out.  I'd planned to use Reunion's various find features to generate reports of burials I'd recorded.  But I never got that far - a somewhat recent cremation I'd forgotten about (no grave site or memorial marker) in one of my lines takes a solid portion of possibilities off the table.

Thinking about the research I've done to date, I had two distinct possibilities - each stemming from my great-grandparents, Gouverneur Cadwalader (1880-1935) and his wife, Mae Drexel Fell (1884-1948).  I could trace the paternal line from Gouverneur back quite a way, or the maternal line back from Mae.  While Gouverneur's paternal line would take me farther back in time, I suspected Mae's maternal line would give me more unbroken generations.  I created a quick timeline report to verify this.



Including my grandmother, Mae's daughter, I have seven known burial locations in my maternal line:

1.  My grandmother, Mae Gouverneur Cadwalader (1923-2000), buried in St. Thomas' Church Cemetery, Whitemarsh, Pennsylvania.  For privacy reasons, I am electing not to post her gravestone photo, though I do have one.

2.  My great-grandmother, Mae Drexel Fell (1884-1948), buried in St. Thomas' Church Cemetery, Whitemarsh, Pennsylvania.


3.  My second-great-grandmother, Sarah Rozet Drexel (1860-1929), buried in St. Thomas' Church Cemetery, Whitemarsh, Pennsylvania.


4.  My third-great-grandmother, Ellen Bicking Rozet (1832-1891), buried in Woodlands Cemetery, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.


5.  My fourth-great-grandmother, Mary Ann Laning (d.1880), buried in Woodlands Cemetery, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. No photo.

6.  My fifth-great-grandmother, Mary Ann Hollenback (1783-1854), buried in Evergreen Cemetery, Owego, New York. No photo.

7.  My sixth-great-grandmother, Sarah Burritt (1750-1833), buried in Hollenback Cemetery, Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania.

Photo by Joan Cavanaugh.
Sarah Burritt Hollenback,
Find A Grave (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=64070611).
Accessed 14 Oct 2012.
Lessons taken away - I need to fine tune how I enter burial information in Reunion, so I'm better able to determine when I've recorded specific cemeteries known.  And I might start attaching photos in Reunion - something I haven't done thus far.

I should also take a trip to Owego, to find Mary Ann Laning's grave, as well as to Wilkes-Barre to see Sarah Burritt's grave for myself.   Getting to Woodlands is doable, but will take a little longer.

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