Roxbury St. Joseph Cemetery (defunct)

Once of the oldest Catholic cemeteries in Boston  (located in Roxbury, which was a town by itself before it was annexed to Boston) was Saint Joseph cemetery located near the Roxbury highlands.   All those interred there were relocated   (see enclosed link)  about 2007 to Calvary Cemetery in Waltham.  I called the office in charge and they advised me that there are no cemetery burial records of any kind.   It was one of the earliest Catholic parishes in (what is now) Boston.  The parish consisted largely of Irish and German immigrants who had settled in Roxbury.        ,_Massachusetts)





My Great Grandmother Underwood had 14 children, until a month ago I was missing 4 of them.  With the help of another researcher on Ancestry we have 1 left to find, a female.  I have known about one daughter Eunice since 2003, knew she married a man whose last name was Lawrence, had a son named Ernest  and I even knew Ernest’s wife’s name was Lillian.  Shortly after Eunice married the family supposedly moved to Illinois but search after search came up empty.  

Last month I again went searching and checked out a Binghamton, NY Directory 1898, well low and behold there was a Thomas Lawrence….husband of Aunt Eunice?  Then another wall….no 1900 census for Binghamton or the State of New York had my family in it.  So for 1900, I put in the name Thomas Lawrence with a birth date of 1879 +/- 1 year the United States, I picked a birth year that was near Eunices age and there they were in Georgia with their son Ernest age 1 born in NY, Oct 1898, Thomas was born in Texas, Jul 1873 and I knew Aunt Eunice was born in Homer, Cortland Co. NY. Sep 1880. She was in an 1892 Cortland Co. NY census.  Married for 3 years.  The Lawrence family were Missionaries with the Salvation Army. Then I went into Find-a-Grave, put in Eunice Lawrence, United States well…there she was in Cuyahoga Co. OH. along with a newspaper Article about her death: “WOMAN DIED IN GOD’S SERVICE” “Touching Memorial at a Salvation Army Meeting”  “Husband of Martyr Breaks Down in Describing End”  Capt Thomas Lawrence.  I was able to download the entire touching article to my computer.   Again I went researching in, this time in Ohio, I knew by the newspaper article that Christmas was mentioned near the end, so I picked the years of death records for Cuyahoga Co. 1902-1903 Vol 14 and there she was in image 115 of 372, date of death 20 Nov 1902, she died of Scarlet Fever at the age of 23.   

Thomas did remarry in 1914 and died 22 Feb 1931 in Chicago of Pneumonia, son Ernest died 12 Feb 1983 in Chicago, his wife Lillian lived to be 100 and died 7 Mar 2002 in Indiana but she is buried with Ernest in Illinois. Ernest and Lillian had no children.  I have added them all to Find-a-Grave and connected them to each other and my G Grandparents t0 continue the  generations. 

Sources for these people are: Census Records, Death Records, Cemetery Records, Directories, Obituaries, find-a-grave, Marriage records and WW I Draft Registraions.

The Desk

From The Sidney Record 8 Mar 1884:  Washington News 1855.

In 1855 the British Government sent their steamer “Resolute” to rescue the survivors of the Sir John Franklin expedition, but it became necessary for her officers and crew to abandon her in the ice.  She floated 1000 miles and was found with all of her supplies intact by a United States whaler.

The Queen at once relinquished all claim to the vessel and she became the property of her salvors.  Our Congress then appropriated money, purchased the vessels from the salvors, repaired it at our navy yards and sent it the British Government manned by a crew of American sailors.   The action of our government was highly appreciated, and the praises of the United States was sounded throughout all of England.

Upon the arrival of the Resolute a public reception was held on board, which was attended by the Queen.  Subsequently a handsome desk was made from her oak timber and was presented to the President of the United States by Queen Victoria.  The desk is still used by our President in his private office in the White House.

Now comes the British Government and presents us with their Arctic steamer Alert for our Greely relief expedition, as a graceful acknowledgement for our former generosity.  Representatives Finnerty and Robinson objected to its acceptance as they object to all friendly demonstrations between the United States and Great Britain, but Congress with their exception, voted unanimous thanks.



Death of Charles Delmonico

24 Jan 1884

The dead body of Charles Delmonico the New York Caterer,  was found in the Orange Mountains NJ by two boys hunting for rabbits.  Mr Delmonico was frozen to death.  He was presumably making for the house of his friend General George B. McClellan, which was only a short distance off, when he sank exhausted and succombed to a fatal sleep.  The body was brought to his residence in New York City.

By the Will of the late Charles Delmonico, of New York, his sister receives half of his very large Estate and the other half is divided equally between his two nethews and his niece.

News From The Past

                         “Thursday 24 Jan 1884 Over a Hundred Lives Lost at Sea”

The City of Columbus, from Boston for Savannah, strikes the Massachusetts Coast, and only 22 of those on board saved.  

The news of the terrible steamship disaster which occurred in Vineyard Sound early Friday morning has caused consternation in Boston, where a number of the victims lived.  The Steamship City of Columbus which left Boston 3 pm on Wednesday for Savannah. proceeded safely on her way until Friday morning, when she struck upon the ledge or reef at the Devil’s Bridge buoy off the southwestern end of Martha’s Vineyard.

Captain Wright of Boston, who for 15 years has been employed by the line, was in command at the time, when she struck this ledge and careened over.  She had on board 80 passengers of the first class, 22 in the steerage and 45 officers and men only 23 have been saved.  The wind was blowing a gale at the time.  The boats were swamped as soon as they struck the water.  Soon after noon the revenue cutter Dexter came alongside and took off 21 from the rigging, and carried them to New Bedford, but three of them died on the way.

                          “Thursday 31 Jan 1884 The Indians at Gay Head”

The Boston newspapers have started a subscription to aid the half-breed Indians of Gay Head who nobly assisted saving the lives of 22 men from the wreck of the City of Columbus.  Those who reached the barren headland alive, were treated with boundless though humble hospitality.  Nothing that the limited resources of their noblehearted rescuers could supply was held back. Food, drink, missing articles of clothing were freely given, and then men and women began the sad search for the dead.  The people though scantily clad went down to the landing in the blustering snowstorm; but they seemed to not know it was cold.  One Indian woman sped back to her house and retrieved 2 sheets, which were treasured as luxuries seldom to be used and fetched them weeping as she said it was all she could give to cover the dead and the bodies were quickly sewed up in these winding sheets.  All this and much more these people done without thanks in return.

A condensed article from the “Sidney Record” Delaware Co. NY a weekly newspaper.

New Canadian Cemetery Link

Here is a wonderful site for looking up ancestors in All Canadian Provinces Cemeteries. In the red bar across the top lists Provinces and Territories where you can pick which one you want to research. You can then search by Name or pick a Letter of the alphabet. You can also choose a cemetery.
Since I have ancestors in Ontario, I chose that Province, typed in just the last name (Pembleton) and the list showed up with photo’s of the tombstones, the name of the Cemetery and where it is.
This is a volunteer site, so if you have an ancestor in one of the provinces and a photo of their tombstone you can add it to this site. ENJOY!!!!!

And The Winner Is………

Our very own Genealogy Friend John Zager won a World Subscription to from MSOG (Massachusetts Society of Genealogists) Bristol Chapter.  Giving him his prize is our very own President of the Bristol Chapter Kathleen Rubano.

CONGRATULATIONS JOHN  !!!!!!                                                                                                

   John Zager Winner 2

Updated Passenger List Site

Back in 2012 I added  a site for researching passenger lists.  Upon checking links I discovered that the original one no longer works.  So I have updated the Link. 

This is a terrific site that has links for the United States, Canada and Mexico, 1820-1957.  Some of the links within the site refers you to Ancestry which charges a fee.  Other links are free including a NARA link. Dates vary.  Ellis Island, Barge Office and Castle Garden are free.  When you scroll down you will find “US Ports and Their Available Passenger Lists” Again scrolling down you will find US Territories, Canada and Mexico Ports.  Be sure to check out individual States for there own lists, especially  NY & New England States.

If you find a link listed on the right side of our Blog that does not work, please let me know and I will try to fix it or remove it.  Happy Researching.

new wrinkle, researchers will ADD to the cemetery database

Most burial societies guard their proprietary data strictly. This allows them to charge $ 30 + per hour for genealogical research or access to their records. Here is a new wrinkle (wave of the future ?) where at least one cemetery is inviting family members and possibly others to ADD input into the cemetery database. Seems like sort of like a Facebook of the deceased?

Genealogy success story. Possibly one of our members ??


Recent article from the Jamaica Plain/Boston Gazette newspaper.          Is this the lady who came to some of our meetings a year or two ago ? Recent article from the Jamaica Plain/Boston Gazette newspaper.
Is this the lady who came to some of our meetings a year or two ago ?

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