Cemetery Research Tip from Bill McEvoy

Still from Bill McEvoy’s Forgotten Irish of Mount Auburn Catholic Cemetery.

If you’re watching Bill McEvoy’s Forgotten Irish of Mount Auburn Catholic Cemetery, you may notice that the person being featured doesn’t match the names on the grave. Bill McEvoy assured me that this is a common problem when researching cemeteries as many people can be buried in one plot. But, the head stone often doesn’t reflect all the individuals laid to rest in the grave.

Here’s Bill’s explanation for this phenomenon at the Mount Auburn Catholic Cemetery in Watertown:

“The lots were usually purchased instant to a death of a family member and they did not have the money to place a marker. Much later, a person could be buried with another name – either a relative, neighbor or someone from the old country – someone who would have had the means to purchase a marker.

When I review the names of those buried in the lot, I find the name of the most recent person, whose name is on the marker, as well as any names related the purchaser. 

There are 5,055, 4 person lots and 266, 8 person lots in the Mount Auburn Catholic Cemetery.  Not all of lots are filled to capacity and many of the 4 person lots exceed capacity. I have seen 7 or 8 people buried in a 4 person lot – often infants and children mixed with a few adults.”

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