The Unknowns

Well, that just about sums it up for those whose names and Final Resting Places are Known.  It took me 14 1/2 months, researching just about seven days a week, and loving every minute of it.

Now, I am moving on to the Unknowns, with the occasional update to the Knowns.

The assumption is that this cemetery is completely full, but there are only 179 stones with names on them (including Walden Cemetery).  In addition, I have found 24 death certificates that do not have corresponding stones (Travis County incomplete).  And there are at least 120 sunken areas with or without stones.  That’s a VERY rough guesstimate of 323, give or take.

If you are reading this, and you had an ancestor in the Austin/Northwest Austin area between 1860 (or earlier) and 1960 (or later), and your family does not know where they are buried (“they just disappeared”), well, they might be buried in this cemetery in an unmarked grave.  You might want to seriously consider contacting this blog.

Probably one of the saddest things in this cemetery are the Unknowns.  Here’s how they manifest themselves:

1  Obviously, there are fieldstones at the head and/or foot, that typically do not have etching/scratching/engraving on them.  Of the ones that DO have some sort of writing on them, it is usually just a date, or just initials.  Examples:  “RH” and “The 1867 Stone”

2  Sunken areas, sometimes with a large rock as a headstone/footstone.  These are assumed – and only assumed – to be a grave.  But to me, having seen these sunken areas with head/footstones, this is a fairly good assumption.

3  Even though metal detectors are very inconclusive, we have come across some fairly compelling “rectangles” that are about as large as a coffin.  To date, we have not “declared” any of these to be an Unknown, unless they are associated with a sunken area without a stone.

One of these days Ground Penetrating Radar will hopefully be a reality.

See the next post, where I outline “The 1867 Stone”

– Suzanne

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Published in: on April 9, 2011 at 7:23 pm  Leave a Comment  

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