Oracle Cemetery Identification Project asks for help from public

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Rock structure where map will be located.
John Hernandez | Miner

Cathy Ellis points out worn grave and headstone.
John Hernandez | Miner

San Manuel Miner

A group of volunteers has taken on the task of identifying unmarked graves, cleaning up, and maintaining the Oracle Cemetery. Gloria and Reg Ramsay have been involved in keeping up the cemetery for years. They are now working with other volunteers to gather a list of everyone known to be buried in the Oracle Cemetery. There are many unmarked graves including those of what appear to be infants or children. The members of the Oracle Cemetery Identification Project are trying to find out who is buried in unmarked graves and identify those whose headstones have been worn by the elements so badly they cannot be read.

The project started as a clean up project about a year and a half ago. Members of the local ward of the Church of Jesus Christ Latter Day Saints have been involved in the cleaning. Lorin McCrae decided to locate a grave with GPS coordinates. They are now planning to map the cemetery and give each gravesite a GPS number. Each grave that is identified will be given a number. There will be stakes driven into the gravesite with temporary markers and if the deceased is identified their name will be added to the marker and map. The map will be located in the roofed rock structure at the entrance of the cemetery. This will make it easier for friends and relatives of the deceased to find the grave. It will also assist genealogists and historians in their research.

Noted historical author Catherine Ellis has been helping to identify gravesites and researching death records to find out who is buried in the cemetery. She said the history of the cemetery is interesting. In the 1880s through the early 1900s, people who died in Oracle were buried in Tucson at Holy Hope or Evergreen cemeteries or had their bodies shipped to other parts of the country or Mexico where they were originally from. The first known person to be buried in the area that is now known as the Oracle Cemetery was Andres Castillo in 1911. He was a Mexican working for Lavinia Steward. His body was found on a trail in Oracle. Steward took care of the burial arrangements and purchased the headstone. Soon others began to bury family members in the area. It may have not been a deeded cemetery at the time as town site problems had not been settled.

The Cemetery Grave Identification Project needs help from the public. They are asking anyone that knows who is buried in an unmarked grave or in a grave with an unreadable headstone to write the name on the temporary marker. If you disagree with the name that is on a temporary marker please let them know by calling Gloria Ramsay 520-896-2505 or Cathy Ellis 520-896-3226.

John Hernandez (174 Posts)

John Hernandez lives in Oracle. He is retired and enjoys writing and traveling. He is active in the Oracle Historical Society. He covers numerous public events, researches historical features and writes business/artist profiles.


facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather
facebooktwitterby feather

Comments are closed.

  • Stories Just Posted

    Redhawk Announces Closing of Joint Venture With Anglo American on Copper Creek Project

    November 26th, 2014
    by

    Vancouver, British Columbia- Redhawk Resources, Inc. (“Redhawk” or the “Company”) (TSX:RDK)(FRANKFURT:QF7) is pleased to provide an update with respect to […]


    Learn About ‘Desert Holes’ Saturday With Author Pinau Merlin

    November 26th, 2014
    by

    Anyone who hikes desert trails – or putters around their Gold Canyon or Apache Junction back yard – has pondered […]


    Work on SR 77 in Catalina, north of Tucson 

    November 26th, 2014
    by

    North and southbound SR 77 are reduced to one lane nightly, Monday through Thursday, from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. […]


    Hambly K-8 names Students of the Week

    November 25th, 2014
    by

    Leonor Hambly K-8 School has announced its Students of the Week for the weeks of Nov.


  • Stories Just For You

    Ray’s Galka earns Honorable Mention recognition

    November 25th, 2014
    by

    Copper Basin News Bearcats’ junior volleyball player Stormee Galka was named to the 2014 American Family Insurance Division V All-State team, earning Honorable Mention recognition.


    Fill the Bowl event raises $1500 for Superior Food Bank

    November 25th, 2014
    by

    The Superior High School DECA club hosted the second annual Fill the Bowl soup and salad dinner fundraiser.


    Superior student named as finalist in Pinal County Anti-Drug Poster Contest

    November 25th, 2014
    by

    Late last week, Aubreanna Nunez, a student at John F. Kennedy Elementary School in Superior, was named as one of the finalists in the 2015 Pinal County Anti-Drug Poster Contest.


    Mountain Vista Pride of Our Pride

    November 25th, 2014
    by

    The first quarter of the 2014-15 school year has passed and it is time to announce the Pride of Our Pride winners.


  • Facebook

  • [Advertisement.]
  • Arizona Headlines & Current Weather

  • Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin