Spectrum/William Neary used a drone to make digital images of the Old Warren Center Cemetery as part of a digital mapping program for the site. April 2020
Warren Historical Society has completed its digital map of the Old Warren Center Cemetery.
Old Warren Center Cemetery, also known as Old Burying Ground, is located just south of Melius Road on Cornwall Road.
Its earliest interment was in May 1755 and burials, although few, still occur to the present day
There are at least 870 burials and two early 20th century transcriptions of headstone inscriptions, but until now, there was no way to easily find specific graves.
In the summer of 2018, William Neary, an entering college freshman, kickstarted a mapping project of the cemetery.
Using a drone, he made digital images of the site and then created a map based on those images.
He also designed a spreadsheet which would link each location on the map designated by a letter and a number to a line on the spreadsheet. During the ensuing year, volunteers from the historical society and a Wamogo High School senior, Erik Uhlrichsen, canvassed the cemetery to identify and photograph specific graves.
Sometimes only a few letters or a date was readable, in which case the 1934 Hale Collection of Cemetery Inscriptions and a typescript created in 1916 by two local historians were used to identify a monument.
In late July, Stacy Deming, GIS manager at the Housatonic Valley Association, met with Heather Blue Forstmann and Ellen Paul to discuss if the spreadsheet and map could be combined into an interactive whole available on the Warren Historical Society’s website.
The interactive map would pinpoint places of burial based on a name and/or identify a name based on the grave’s location in the cemetery.
The digitized map was recently launched on the historical society’s website.
All standing monuments or remnants have been identified and located on the digitized map and photographs continue to be added.
In June the Warren Historical Society will hold a reception and cemetery tour to highlight the map’s usability for those visiting the cemetery and for out of town researchers.