Friday, July 25, 2014

Strange to Find Honesty in Washington, DC!

Cyrus (1912-2008) and Frankie T. (1915-1988)

Rock Creek Cemetery
Washington, DC

Saturday, July 12, 2014

The ABC Cemetery - Bedford, Virginia - Truth or Fiction?

The "ABC" Cemetery 

Off of Rt. 122 near Bedford, one can find a most unusual cemetery. 

Officially known as the Antioch Baptist Church Cemetery, most locals refer to it as the "ABC Cemetery," not because of its name, but because of the obsessive-compulsive nature of its former and long-time owner and caretaker, Thomas Aadland. Aadland's sickness compelled him to continuously re-order the graves to keep them in strict alphabetical order. Local residents would find Aadland at any time of day or night following a new burial, digging up graves and shuffling caskets and headstones from plot to plot to maintain the alphabetic burial sequence. 

Aadland required all plot owners to sign a form acknowledging the "floating" nature of their burial plot and allowing him to change the assigned plot and move each body as needed. As bizarre as it sounds, family members didn't mind the arrangement, since it allowed them to easily find the grave sites of their loved ones on return visits, even years later, without having to remember the location between visits.

In 1992, Aadland found himself near death, and he realized that he would no longer be able to maintain the cemetery, much less continue to shuffle the grave sites. Because of this, he decided to close the cemetery, but to his horror, he realized that the graves would have to be shuffled one more time so that he himself could be buried in proper sequence (and an "A" shuffle to boot...the worst kind). Too weak to shuffle the graves once more, Aadland placed a newspaper ad seeking laborers, but he had no takers.

If you visit the ABC Cemetery today, you can observe firsthand how Aadland solved his dilemma. Look for the very last grave in the cemetery...the grave of Thomas Zuckerman... formerly known as Thomas Aadland.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Cemetery Crime Thursday - Illinois

Brothers accused of stealing angels from cemetery

Posted 7:18 PM, July 8, 2014, by Paul Schankman

BETHALTO, IL. (KTVI)  – Since this past Easter residents around Bethalto have been wondering who’s been responsible for the theft of angel statues from grave markers and benches at the Rose Lawn Memorial Gardens cemetery.

Two brothers, 18-year-old Nathan and 21-year-old Nicholas Cato have been charged with stealing 25 angels from grave sites and selling them to a local man who thought the statues were legitimately procured by the brothers.

Police have returned 13 angels to families, but 12 statues and other assorted gravesite items have yet to have been claimed.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn

Article: "Preserving History, and Uncovering Secrets, at Green-Wood Cemetery (Brooklyn, NY)
This article is posted on the New York Times website.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Travel Tuesday - Ohio!

My siblings and I enjoying the 
Wonderful World of Ohio in July 1969!

Monday, July 7, 2014

Irish website helpful to researchers

by Joan Griffis
The Commercial-News
July 6, 2014

Claire Santry’s website, Irish Genealogy Toolkit, at, should be studied by anyone with Irish ancestry. For beginners, there are links (from the toolbar at the left) to Getting Started and Next Steps. Her link to “top 10 free Irish genealogy databases online” is sure to be helpful for advanced as well as beginning researchers.