One of Montgomery's greatest historic landmarks.
What if we could search it by name, date or other recorded information?
Or view it's interment records, graves and monuments?
Or geomap it's 36,000 graves?
This massive project started in 2013 (Summer of 2016???), with MCHS Chairman James Fuller and volunteers, Shara and Judia Green, working with Oakwood Cemetery Manager Philip Taunton to enter the interment card data for 38,076 gravesites into a database.
Starting in November of 2019, MCHS partnered with the City of Montgomery, which generously provided ArcGIS Geomapping and database expertise and server space to create a online base map/database. Out of the 38,076 gravesite records collected in the original MCHS database, only 7,810 are located correctly, partly due to multiple graves sometimes found in one plot, and partly due to the GPS margin of error of 10-35 feet.
To correct the locations, and allow additional gravesites to be added, the City of Montgomery created an ARCGIS mapping/data collection app to collect and geolocate grave data onsite at the cemetery. Because of the large amount of gravesites/records involved, this project will require volunteers to complete.
MCHS is currently looking for volunteers who will be trained to pinpoint, photograph and confirm those records so that future generations can trace and trust their family histories as recorded by its residents for 200 years.
Project Leader – MCHS Executive Director Pat Clark
City of Montgomery
City of Montgomery IT Manager – Savio Dias
GIS Specialist – Nida Jackson
Project Directors – Kris and Kay Kripchak
Super Trainers – to
be trained by the Project Directors
Trainers – who will then train and assist the field
Field Surveyors –to
geolocate, drop a pin, photograph, confirm/enter data via app and map
Field Location Specialist(s) –
to work with the Oakwood Sexton to mark wooden stakes with appropriate
location info and place it around the grounds so surveyors can get
Social Media specialist(s) – to work with IT consultant and MCHS to find and inform
participants, update website blog, Facebook, Instagram and other publicity
Volunteer MCHS Committee Chair – to assist the MCHS Project Leader with team recruiting and organizing going forward
2013 – Project initiation by MCHS
2019 – Interment card data collection completed
November 2019 – Partnership with the City of Montgomery
August 2020 – City of Montgomery completes database and ARCGIS map, adds smartphone app for further data collection
Data Collection App (ARCGIS Collector) available for IOS and Android
Are you looking for an outdoor tech savvy project? How about field surveying historic old Oakwood Cemetery using your smart phone camera, a geolocation app and base map to refine the records of actual grave locations? This can be more challenging than it sounds with GPS off by 10-35 feet and/or having to drop a pin on a plot where 3 others may reside. You may have to do a rubbing to read the weathered headstone to figure out who is where. If you like history, getting outdoors and puzzles, check out the base map at
https://citymgm.maps.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=c9a3e0b8bc914b8eb9eeb198593b8cf0 and let us know if you want to be involved using the contact form below.
School/Activity Group/Organization Leaders and Organizers: this can be a great activity for community service or education for your group. This activity could be the basis for a merit badge or community service program. We are Looking for TEAM TRAINERS too, so get your kids and grandkids involved and help us keep gravesites alive for the next 200 years.