Volunteers sought to preserve history of Oakwood Cemetery

Volunteers sought to preserve history of Oakwood Cemetery

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - The Montgomery County Historical Society (MCHS) needs your help in preserving history.

MCHS, in partnership with the city, is looking to create an online searchable database and map of Oakwood Cemetery’s 200,000 burial sites that span the city’s last 200 years.

The project began in 2013 when MCHS members began putting data into the society’s original database. While doing so they learned only 7,810 gravesites were correctly located out of the 38,076 gravesite records collected.

MCHS says the error was partly due to multiple graves sometimes found in one plot, and a GPS margin of error of 10-35 feet.

To correct the locations, and allow additional gravesites to be added, GIS analyst Nida Jackson created an ArcGIS mapping/data collection app to collect and geolocate grave data onsite at the cemetery.

“Volunteers will collect any information on a gravestone, vault, or any memorial associated with it so it’s absolutely a thing that helps with geological research,” MCHS board member Kris Kripckak said..h and confirm those records.

The hope is that future generations can trace and trust their family histories as recorded by its residents for 200 years.

“Volunteers will collect any information on a gravestone, vault, or any memorial associated with it so it’s absolutely a thing that helps with geological research,” MCHS board member Kris Kripckak said.

To become a volunteer or learn more about the project, visit this website.

MCHS also hopes the project will help bring tourists to Montgomery to save pieces of history for the next generation.

“Everybody loves their families and I think that it’s only fair to make whatever records we can available to the future generations,” MCHS executive director Pat Clark said.

The goal is to expand this project to other cemeteries across the city, MCHS added.

Copyright 2021 WSFA 12 News. All rights reserved.