Interview post on CemeteryTravel.com on Oct 5, 2012
Interview done by Loren Rhoads
In 2010, Doyle Glaze II started the CemeteryRegistry.US project. This let him link his two passions — technology and genealogy — to create a unique tool to assist others in locating where their family members were laid to rest.
CemeteryRegistry.US strives to be the most complete and accurate free list of cemeteries in the United States. Each listing includes date of establishment, affiliation, type of access, contact information for the cemetery (including its website), as well as additional resources such as lists of transcriptions, photographs, and video.
Shortly after starting this project, Doyle was diagnosed with cancer. He found cemetery hunting to be great therapy for dealing with the emotional, physical, and medical aspects of cancer. He says, “It was, and still is, very motivating for me to continue moving forward with my life, including this project. I’ve spent a lot of evenings and weekends doing research and cemetery hunting with the support of my wife Barbara. Without her, I would not be here and this project would not be where it is today.”
Cemetery Travel: Why should people care about cemeteries?
Doyle Glaze II: Everyone, deep inside, has the fear of being forgotten. The cemetery is the last place for a person to say, “I was someone. Someone cared about me.”
Cemetery Travel: What sparked your interest in cemeteries in the first place?
Doyle Glaze II: Doing my own genealogy. I wanted to get photos of my ancestors’ headstones. When looking for the cemeteries where they’re buried, I was unable to find where they were located or how to get there. The more I looked, the more disappointed I was. Even if there was some information, a lot of it was incorrect. I discovered the need for a registry of cemeteries with as much correct information as possible to help people locate a cemetery.
Cemetery Travel: So that inspired you to start CemeteryRegistry.us?
Doyle Glaze II: I wanted to help people in their searches to find someone that has passed. I know there are websites that have lists of people buried in cemeteries, but if you can’t find the cemetery, then what is the use of knowing that?
By Jeanie Hale Lowe
Printed in Illinois State Genealogical Society Quarterly, Vol. 36, No. 4
..It’s my property and I’ll tell you if and when you can cross it to get to that cemetery.” Says the landowner of property that surrounds a cemetery.
In response the descendant says, “I’ll go to the grave of my ancestors whenever I want to and you can’t stop me from paying my respects.”
These are two strongly conflicting sides to a highly emotional situation. A similar situation occurred in Williamson County this past summer. Monty Tyner, whose ancestors are buried in Wilson Cemetery and the property owners, Elizabeth Bowman was willing to grant limited access but feared that damage would be done to the dirt roadway and was concerned about liability. Tyner sought to visit the graves of his ancestors (including his brother, uncle and grandparents) and clean the immediate grounds around the stones as he had done for many years prior. The police were called.
Generally researchers and property owners work out an agreement and access is not limited or denied. However, the Wilson Cemetery situation is not unique. It’s happening more and more.
By Carole Lynn, saveagrave.net
October 1, 2012
There are an unknown number of abandoned cemeteries worldwide. Many abandoned cemeteries are the remnants of pioneers who moved on. Some are former churchyards, or the land of old family farms. Many counties have run out of funds to maintain the cemeteries. Today thousands of abandoned cemeteries remain undiscovered. If you wish to discover one you may not have to look far!
Old burial grounds are links to family we have never known. They can tell us a great deal about our human history. Sadly they are being lost to time. You will always remember the first abandoned cemetery you come across, it will bring tears to your eyes. You will feel helpless to do anything about this loss of heritage. Or can you do something?
There are some community people and groups that want to do the “right thing” and begin to restore a cemetery. People band together for a short time and clean up an old cemetery. Then they fail to return and maintain it. You must make provisions to keep the cemetery maintained forever. This work is never completed. We must train the next generation to take over the care of our cemeteries, otherwise Mother Nature will just reclaim the grounds again.