Thursday, February 7, 2013

The Historic Union Cemetery, Redwood City, California

The Spotlight column is a regular feature of the Weekly Genealogist newsletter from the New England Historic Genealogical Society.  This week it features a Redwood City Cemetery.

by Valerie Beaudrault, Assistant Editor New England Historic Genealogical Society

The Historic Union Cemetery, Redwood City, California

The Union Cemetery is located in Redwood City, California, which is on the San Francisco Peninsula. It is the county seat of San Mateo County. The cemetery was established by May of 1859. By 1878 there had been nearly 400 interments, and specific large lots were designated for fraternal organizations and the Grand Army of The Republic (GAR). On the website’s main page you will find questions about an individual buried in the cemetery. Click on the Answer link to open the burial record page containing the answer to the question.

Click on the People link to open a new page to search for individuals buried in the cemetery. Then click on the Search the People Database. The database may be searched by first name, last name, year of death, and burial plot identifier. The search results include the name of the deceased, date of death, burial/plot identifier, and source of the information in the record. The date of death information varies. In many cases you will find only the year of death. Click on the name link to open a new page with more detailed information. The view location link will take you to a map showing the location of the plot. You will also find a list containing the names of individuals buried nearby and a list of individuals with the same last name buried there. In some cases you will find a transcription of the deceased’s obituary, links to external sites, photographs, and stories.

There are a number of other links on the main People page. These include People with Stories, People with Pictures, People with Find-A-Grave pages, and “All the People with Extra Information.” Click on the links to access lists with name links. Click on an individual’s name to view his or her webpage. The Find-A-Grave list includes links to each individual’s Find-A-Grave page. You can use the Fraternal Groups with Plots in the Union Cemetery link to access the following organizations: Grand Army of the Republic (GAR), Independent Order of Odd Fellows (IOOF), People in the Free and Accepted Masons (Masons), United Ancient Order of Druids (Druids), and Improved Order of Red Men (RedMen). Clicking on these links will take you to each group’s pages, which contain a description of the organization, photographs, and name links for the members. Click on the link to view the members’ webpages.

This database catalogs many of the markers in the cemetery. The data fields include marker name, exists, photos, plot, people listed, and source. The data can be sorted by any of the fields just by clicking on the heading. Click on the “P” in the photos column to view the photograph. Each “P” is a link to a different image of the gravestone.

The Archives page contains links to a variety of resources, including maps of Redwood City, burial lists, newspapers and research, documents, The Journal of Local History, stories, and photographs.

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