2 Replies Latest reply on Apr 22, 2019 4:30 PM by Ryan Noyes

    WPA Cemetery and Vital Records project (Historical Records Survey)

    Ryan Noyes Wayfarer

      Hi there,


      I'm curious if the Archives holds copies of the WPA's grave-transcription sheets?  The cemetery of interest, located in Portland, Maine, was surveyed along with (I think) most all cemeteries in Cumberland County, Maine, as part of a WPA project.  Annoyingly, the City of Portland archives vault contains only a physical survey of the cemetery of interest in the form of a to-scale map, noting individual headstone locations.  In other words, the single-sheet records for each individual plot are missing -- but only for this cemetery of interest (they exist for all other ones surveyed by the WPA).  I'm just curious if copies of these might exist in College Park?  If so, would they be under RG 69.5.6 and/or what best can I do to be as specific as possible when filling out a call slip in the research room?  If it matters, the cemetery would have been called "Grand Trunk Cemetery" or possibly "Presumpscot Cemetery."


      Thanks in advance!

        • Re: WPA Cemetery and Vital Records project (Historical Records Survey)
          Rebecca Collier Ranger

          Dear Mr. Noyes,


          Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!


          The Work Projects Administration (WPA) did not keep the grave transcription sheets. The people hired to collect the data turned in the sheets after the project was completed to the local agency in charge of that particular cemetery. It was up to that local agency to decide what to do with sheets afterwards. The WPA retained neither the raw data nor the completed survey except in a very few cases where copies of the record indexes were kept. We searched the Records of the Work Projects Administration, 1922-1944 (Record Group 69) for Maine but were unable to locate copies of records relating to cemeteries in Maine.


          We hope this information is useful. Best of luck with your research!


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