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Grace Matters Symposium: Exploring WNY's Diverse Cemeteries

  • June 13, 2022 9:32 AM
    Message # 12814846
    Megan Eves (Administrator)

    Grave Matters Symposium:
    Exploring WNY's Diverse Cemeteries
    Friday, June 17 @ 10:00 am - 3:00 pm

    In this virtual symposium, hear from local history experts and explore the diverse histories of Western New York cemeteries as well as the communities to which these cemeteries belong. This symposium is open for library workers, archivists, local historians, and others who are interested this piece of WNY history! Itinerary and registration instructions listed below.


    10 - 10:15 am: Opening remarks

    10:15 - 11:15 am:
    Jim Boles - "The Niagara County, NY Poorhouse and Cemetery"

    A research interest of Jim's from the 1990's, the history of the 1829 Niagara County Poorhouse will be reviewed. This will include an overview of those buried at the site and a marked mystery grave of a wealthy family.  A spreadsheet project to list all of the graves and recorded death records will be discussed.  The ongoing clean-up efforts and working with the government officials will be covered.

    11:15 - 12:15 pm:
    Pete Ames - "Grave Matters: Locating and Honoring Veterans"

    Genealogy is Pete's primary interest, and he is also an advocate of noting and honoring US military veterans. His research usually involves visits to local cemeteries where he determined that the final resting place of many vets weren’t noted. That was in 2010, and the beginning of several projects that Pete undertook to rectify that issue at 3 different cemeteries in the area. Details to follow.

    12:15 - 12:45 pm - Lunch break

    12:45 - 1:45 pm:
    Dr. Chana R. Kotzin - "Bound Up In the Bond of Eternal Life"

    Jewish cemeteries are sites of religious and cultural memory for family and communities. They highlight patterns of attachment and acculturation alongside patterns of immigrant settlement and communal relocations. Through an exploration of the different types of Jewish cemeteries, this presentation will explore some of the precepts that govern their creation, variation, iconography and funerary practices with illustrative examples from synagogues, mutual benefit aid societies, and Jewish fraternal organizations.

    1:45 - 2:45 pm:
    Terry Abrams - "Haudenosaunee Burial Customs and Cemeteries"

    This presentation will focus on traditional Haudenosaunee burial customs and beliefs about death, and the history of cemetery practices primarily on the Tonawanda Seneca Nation territory. I will also talk briefly about the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA).

    $10 for WNYLRC and ESLN Members, $15 for non-members.
    Registration is required.

    Registration instructions: To register, click “Add to Cart”. Then, select “Cart” to check out. Your registration will not be finalized until you complete these two steps and receive an emailed confirmation of your registration.

    If you don’t have an account on our website but want to register for this workshop, you can create an account using your work credentials, or as a non-member. If you go to the upper right hand corner of our website, you’ll see text that says “Create an account”. Click on that to get started.

    • If your library is a member of WNYLRC, you will select “WNYLRC Member Library Staff”. Once you select that, you will then be prompted to select your Institution.
    • If you’re an employee of a library affiliated with the other 3Rs/ESLN councils, you will select “Other 3Rs Library Council Member”. Then you will be prompted to select which council you are affiliated with.
    • If you are not affiliated with a 3Rs/ESLN council, you will select “Non-member” and register as a non-member.

    If you need further assistance, please contact Caitlin at

    Register here

    This webinar presentation will be recorded and the recording will be sent to all registrants regardless of attendance. However, you must attend live in order to receive CE Credit. We cannot give credit for watching the recording.
    Live transcription and closed captioning will be provided via and Zoom.

    We are committed to offering inclusive, diverse, and equitable services to all of our members. To request specific accommodations, please contact Caitlin Kenney ( at least five business days ahead of the event. Additionally, if you have other questions, please contact Caitlin.

The Museum Association of New York helps shape a better future for museums and museum professionals by uplifting best practices and building organizational capacity through advocacy, training, and networking opportunities.

Museum Association of New York is a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit organization. 

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