06 January 2011

Oak Park Cemetery in Chandler, Lincoln Co. OK

Last week on the way back to OKC I stopped at Chandler City Hall to check the records they might have for Oak Park Cemetery. I had gone through a card file about 10 years ago when looking for some Civil War veterans, but could not remember what kind of records they had.

The clerk took me back to the small room that holds the old record books for the city. There is a card file on which SOME of the burials are recorded. One big problem is that many years are listed with only two numbers. So there is no way to tell from the index card if 01 is 1901 or 2001, for example.

The also have to volumes of records. One is the book with listings by block and plot. This list has many names that have no dates with them- simply a name listed for a specific space. But there were many that DID have death dates listed.

The second volume is an index to cemetery records. This book is alphabetical by surname letter and includes name, age, death/burial date, and lot owner. This book has many entries that the burial volume does not.

So I went through the Burial Record book first and then the Burial Index book, extracting all pre-1920 deaths. Many were duplicates, but there some in each volume not listed in the other. Then I started on the card file and made it through blocks 1 through 4. I still have the majority of the cemetery left to check for the card file, and I will get back to it some day (hopefully this summer).

The City of Chandler is in the process of comparing tombstones to the cemetery records to update the records and make as complete a listing as possible. And they plan to put the information on-line! So I will send them all the entries I Have for Oak Park Cemetery in Chandler to help them with their project. I have the advantage of having some obits and published records, along with tombstone inscriptions from walking the cemetery.

Yet another example of how collaborative efforts can result in a successful project!

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