Find-A-Grave is a wonderful site where volunteers take photos of gravestones and upload them, allowing distant researchers like myself to view them without getting in a plane and trekking across country. It is a growing site with new photos being added all the time including, recently, my great-grandparents John Alexander and Olivia Todd.
I had the death date for my great-grandfather from his death certificate which has been made available on Ancestry.com, but my great-grandmother’s death certificate was not there. I suspected, and still suspect as I’ll detail below, that she died in New Jersey, even though she lived (nearly) her whole life in Philadelphia and was buried there.
I knew they were buried at North Cedar Hill cemetery, along with many other Todds and related families, and had been checking Find-A-Grave regularly, but I came across their gravestone through the index on Ancestry.com and the “hints” function there. A pleasant surprise.
So, now I knew Olivia passed away in 1955. I knew that there was an index for the North Cedar Hill cemetery in the Pennsylvania Church and Town Records database on Ancestry, and by browsing to the cemetery’s records I found she was buried on December 10. With that information I was able to find her obituary that stated she died on December 7, 1955 and that her residence at the time was Taunton Lake, NJ, thus my assumption that she passed away in New Jersey.
TODD — Dec. 7, OLIVIA R. (nee Moore), wife of the late John A. Todd, Sr., of Berlin rd., Taunton Lake, N.J., formerly of 2075 E. Tioga st., Phila., aged 86 years. Relatives, friends, also members of St. Philip’s Methodist Church are invited to services Sat. 1 P.M., at her son’s residence, 4248 Griscom st. Int North Cedar Hills Cemetery. Friends may call Friday evening.
Philadelphia Inquirer, 12/9/1955, p.51
The next step will be to request her death certificate from New Jersey. [Received it 9/23/15] Of my great-grandparents, that leaves only the death date of my mother’s father’s father, John Samuel Garrison, unknown.