20 November 2009

Calvary Pioneer Memorial Park in San Diego - Post 1

The story of Calvary Cemetery in the Mission Hills area of San Diego is complicated, sad and amazing. Several articles that tell the story and provide records are:

* Marna Clemons' Calvary Cemetery, San Diego web page, which has the most complete history of the cemetery and list of persons buried there. There is a Rootsweb WorldConnect database for the persons buried there with some vital record information for each person when it could be found. The site has ten plot maps of the graves here.

* The US GenWeb Tombstone Transcription Project article, listing about 800 names, by Michael Harris

* The San Diego Historical Society Finding Aid with about 700 black and white photos taken before the stones were removed from Calvary Cemetery.

Today, the Calvary Pioneer Memorial Park is an urban park with houses on city streets all around - the location is shown here (1501 Washington Place, San Diego CA 92103).

The memorial plaques and the recovered gravestones are in the southeast corner of the Park. Here is a view of the memorial plaque area with the gravestones in the background:

Note that only the gravestones were removed from the park, not the graves or their contents, in 1970. The persons are still there under the sod and trees. The gravestones in the park do not mark particular graves - they are just there as a testament to a few of the persons buried there.

There are six memorial plaques and each has about 300 names on them (I didn't count them all!). They are shown below from left to right:

In succeeding posts, I will show some of the gravestones that are standing in Calvary Pioneer Memorial Park today.

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