Minnesota prison inmates raise funds for tombstones

In a perfect world, everyone would have an engraved stone identifying his or her place of burial. It would include details that genealogists seek. I have written before about my Great Grandfather Alexander Charles Stuart who lies in an unmarked grave not very far from where I live. His career was carving tombstones in Wisconsin, Illinois, Kansas, and Minnesota. But he died in poverty.

I love reading heartwarming cemetery stories. Many people who died in an institution such as a prison are often buried without a tombstone. According to an article in the Shakopee Valley News (Scott County, Minnesota), inmates at the Shakopee women’s prison learned of unmarked graves of former prison residents. The burials are at St. Mark’s Cemetery which is on the former prison property of the old state reformatory for women. Along with prison staff they figured out that two inmates and two infant children of offenders  were in graves just marked by prison inmate numbers and raised the funds to erect proper markers. The new ones give each person’s full names with date of birth and death. Three burials were from the 1920s and the other was from 1954.

I applaud them for this project!

Read the full story here.




© 2014, Paula Stuart-Warren. All rights reserved.

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