Chattahoochee Valley Historical Society
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Rock Springs Baptist Church Cemetery Added to FindAGrave.com
Rock Springs Baptist Church Cemetery, located six miles NW of Lafayette on County Road 62, also know as the "Old Chapman Trail" has just been completed by members of the CVHS and added to FindAGrave.com. Click here to view the Rock Springs Cemetery on FindAGrave. The site includes some photos and obituaries from The LaFayette Sun.
CVHS Cemetery Survey
In 1983, the Chattahoochee Valley Historical Society published A Survey of Cemeteries in Chambers County, Alabama. Although very few epitaphs of people born after 1880 were included, this book has been a very helpful reference for researchers in east Alabama. Currently the members of the CVHS are making an effort to update this book and include all burials to the present time. This of course is a daunting task and an ongoing project. Until such a publication can be realized, all cemetery surveys for Chambers County are being entered on the website FindAGrave.com. With this site, each individual entry for a cemetery is assigned a memorial page that allows the contributor to upload photographs of the person, tombstone and also to link with other family members. The database of FindAGrave now has over 65 million names and is an excellent reference tool that is highly recommended by the CVHS.
CVHS Cemetery Survey for Reprinting of A Survey of Cemeteries in Chambers County, AL
Suggested Methods for Book Revision
Old Cemetery Book is divided as follows:
Section I - Church Cemeteries
Section II - Community Cemeteries
Section III - Family Cemeteries
In each category list cemeteries in alphabetical order
Give the location of the cemetery -- Section, Township and Range. Also give general directions such as County Road #, Community Name, etc.
A comment on the condition of the cemetery would be helpful such as "overgrown," "in heavily wooded area," " almost totally inaccessible," or "neatly kept."
In the old book, brief histories of churches are given. Early history is good and only known facts should be used. However, information about parsonages, number of Sunday School room and other current church programs are of no relevance for what we are trying to accomplish with this book. All histories included in the old book need to be reviewed and edited before being used again.
Copying Inscriptions from the Cemetery
When copying a cemetery I would recommend using the buddy system. One person should read information from the tombstone and the other record the information. As a precautionary measure, both people should double check the recorded information to make sure it is recorded accurately.
Before beginning the cemetery survey decide on a logical starting point and develop a system or plan of order in which you will go from one family plot to another. In a large cemetery this will help you avoid any ommision of graves.
In a family plot look at the graves and determine what appears to be the parents, patriarch or oldest graves. Record the father's name first, followed by the mother's name then the remaining graves.
Abbreviate the months of the year as follows: Jan., Feb., Mar., Apr., May, June, July, Aug., Sept., Oct., Nov. and Dec. Single space between each family and double space when leaving one family and beginning another. Example of the above recommendations:
A. D. Pate, Jan. 22, 1818 - Feb. 27, 1889
Mary A. E. Pate, Oct. 14, 1823 - Aug. 10, 1898
Miss Susie Pate, Oct. 28, 1858 - Dec. 12, 1925
Miss Augusta D. Pate, June 14, 1863 - Nov. 10, 1921
Only copy names, birth and death dates and other important information such as genealogical, marriage and war service. Examples:
John Barber, Born in Glenwherry, Antrim County, Ireland and married Sarah Carmichael in 1790 and emigrated to Fairfield District, S.C. in 1791, whence he removed to this state in 1839. Died aged 78 years.
Margaret S. Johnston, wife of J. G. Anglin, Sept. 2, 1842 - Aug. 11, 1926
John James Clark, Died March 24, 1913. Aged 65 years. Co. "A" 8th Confederate Cavalry Reg. CSA
Joseph Schuessler, Feb. 16, 1852 - Feb. 21, 1861. Son of Lewis & Mary A. Schuessler was killed by a shot from a pistol in the hands of fellow pupil.
There are MANY old family cemeteries in Chambers County that need to be copied and are not in the old cemetery book. I would sugeest advertising in the local papers and asking for the public to assist in locating these cemeteries. In the next issue of The Voice, there will be an annouoncement about this project as well. We need to recruit as many CVHS members as possible to help in surveying cemeteries now that the weather is cooler and crawly critters are about to go into hibernation.
The problem with the old book is the early cut off date of 1880 births. I suggest we use December 31, 2005 as the cut off date for deaths. Obviously, this is going to be more than one volume, but I feel that this needed.
The book needs a GOOD index. I would suggest we do a complete index rather than just the surname index as the old book has.
Submitted to the CVHS Board by member Virginia Weldon.