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Genealogy society catalogs local grave markers in online database

Chris Marchand

Chris Marchand served as editor of the Dryden Observer from August 2009 to April 2018.
Anna Turcotte has photographically cataloged over 2,000 local grave markers for a nationwide genealogy project. Photo by Chris Marchand

By Chris Marchand

“You’re never quite finished,” says Anna Turcotte reflecting on the unique lack of finality to a task that has consumed her spare time over recent years.

Over the last few years, Turcotte has photographically catalogued and indexed in the neighbourhood of 2,000 gravestones at Dryden Cemetery — part of a national effort to provide resources for her fellow genealogists who are researching family histories.

With some help from Ed Lambert and Karen Lawrence, who processed the photos, Turcotte’s efforts are available online in the Canadian Gravemarker Gallery, based in North Bay, Ontario.

She photographed the cemetery block by block and indexed the photographs by last name.

Dryden Genealogy Society’s Mary Anne Misner says the project was a significant one and will serve as a great resource for years to come.

“Her fellow genealogists are very proud of her and what she has accomplished over the past few years,” said Misner. “This site will be a great asset to anyone seeking information about their ancestors in Dryden.”

Turcotte says Dryden Cemetery’s oldest grave marker marks the burial of Dryden’s first postmaster David Smith who passed away in 1897 at the age of 39.

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