October Program

October 21, 2023 9:30 am - 12:00 pm
Speaker: Mary Lish
Finding That One Crack in the Brick Wall in Cemeteries and Funeral Homes

Zoom only

Register only for Zoom below


9:30-10:00 AM – Sharing and socializing – open mic 

10:00 AM-Welcome and brief announcements followed by the speaker

Program Description

Finding the Crack in the Brick Wall in Cemeteries and Funeral Homes

Our organization’s mission is to locate and preserve records vital to the history of the people of Essex County, and specifically, Newark, New Jersey, one of the earliest gateway cities of the United States.  But our methods could be used for any community to document their own geographic locale.

To that end, I will give a brief overview of how we started, how we were able to convince so many organizations to open their books to us, and how through my first project, computerization of the Old German Cemetery in Newark – Woodland Cemetery (1856-pr), we were able to parlay that into one organization after another opening their doors to us. 

Overlooked by many is the information contained in the records of cemeteries and funeral homes.  

Cemeteries – possibly more than just your uncle is buried there.

Funeral Homes – Not all of them, but more than you would think, kept detailed family histories.  

Church Records – Yes, Ancestry has a lot of them, but did you know that a great many of them are not indexed – so info is NOT available through a simple name search.  And Ancestry does NOT have all the records. You may find more on your own.

OldNewark.com – City website extraordinaire.

Speaker Bio
Mary Lish
Mary Lish

Mary Lish

New Jersey Records Preservation Group

Mary is a dedicated researcher who has been exploring her own family history since 1975.  She attributes much of her expertise and knowledge of research to the fact that she began prior to the internet and the wonderful explosion of the records on-line.  

Having climbed the “stacks” in the basement of New York City Hall, writing countless letters trying to locate the right church or cemetery, she located many records which were not available to the general public.  As a self-defined computer geek, this prompted her to “give back” to the community who shared their findings by creating (with the invaluable assistance of a volunteer group) databases of those records she did find, such as cemeteries, funeral homes, and churches.

She formed the New Jersey Records Preservation Group to give a central repository for all the records they have located and been granted permission to publish.