My blog has been changed to make it more appealing for those who have New England ancestors and want to see the area through photos. Things I’ll include are typical white New England churches, libraries showing their genealogical collection, historical societies, cemeteries, war memorials, in general, anything to do with history.

For four years I’ve blogged mostly about my personal genealogy in New England (Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire), New York, New Jersey, Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, and the Eastern Townships of Quebec, Canada. I still will, can’t forget my own roots.

Please check out the labels on the right side for articles. The header tabs at the top are a work in progress.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Cemeteries - Check for Footstones


Sometimes, a footstone is far easier to read than a headstone. It usually contains just the first and last names. These small stones are in addition to the headstones. Most times, when I roam a cemetery, I tend to run all around looking at the large stones. Two of the photos show perfectly engraved footstones. Not that the headstones were damaged, they were just in the shade, so my camera shot didn't capture what was written. I do know that their headstones could be read, because a quick peak at Find-A-Grave showed great pictures taken by somebody else.  That being said, many times old headstones are in very bad shape, either broken, inscription worn due to weather or completely missing.

Often if you just take a photo head on, to get the inscription, you might not even be aware that there is a footstone. Always look behind the headstone, about 5' or so to see if there is a footstone.


Early New England cemeteries have a lot of footstones, so we are quite lucky.  These footstone illustrations are located at Cambridge, MA, across the street from Harvard University.

The photo below give you an idea of what a headstone and footstone look like taken together.  It was posted on Tuesday, for my Steven Daniel.  There is a separate photo of the footstone, but I was wondering if everybody knew what it was.  (The headstone is in the front middle, and the small footstone is behind.)  And a perfect example of a headstone that was damaged.

4 comments:

M. Diane Rogers said...

Good point! And, many of the cemeteries I visit are more modern than these, but sometimes there are curbings too with at least the family surname. Sometimes that's all there is...sad to say.

Barbara Poole said...

Hi, M. Diane. Thanks for the comment. I am looking forward to learning about your area next week. Hope you post a blog or two about the big event.

Wendy said...

I miss the cemeteries back home in New England. Yes, the foot stones tend to be present, and help give clues if a headstone can not be read. They definitely should not be overlooked!

Barbara Poole said...

Thanks Wendy for the comment. I know you must miss them, you are soooooo far away! When are you returning to the states?