Two weeks ago I looked at the Birth, Death and Marriages Indexes from Victoria, and mentioned that, due to the cost of ordering certificates, that alternative means of finding death dates were to use cemetery records and death notices or obituaries. This week I’ll focus on cemetery records.
One resource to use when trying to find a cemetery your ancestor or relative was buried in is the Australian Cemeteries website. This website contains details of a large number of cemeteries around Australia, with links to those that have online databases, or contact details for the cemeteries that don’t have online databases.
I’ll use my grandfather as an example. From the death index, I found he died in 1960 in Box Hill. The closest cemetery to where he died would be the Box Hill Cemetery, however, I knew from my dad that at the time of his death he was living in Heidelberg. This meant he could have been buried at the Warringal Cemetery in Heidelberg. Another possibility was the large crematorium and Memorial Park for the northern suburbs of Melbourne at Fawkner.
So, on the Australian Cemeteries website, I selected the state of Victoria, and selected first B for Box Hill. These is an online index for Box Hill Cemetery within the Australian Cemeteries site http://www.australiancemeteries.com/vic/whitehorse/boxhillw_data.htm. My grandfather wasn’t listed, so I went back and searched under W for Warringal. The Warringal cemetery doesn’t have an online index, so I decided to check the Fawkner Crematorium first, before contacting the Warringal Cemetery.
The records for Fawkner Crematorium and Memorial Park are grouped together with records from other cemeteries around Melbourne on the Greater Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust website. After selecting Deceased Search, I then selected the Deceased Search next to Fawkner Memorial Park. This brought up a page where I can select to Search All Cemeteries. This is helpful, as it may pick up a cemetery I wouldn’t have thought to look at. In this case, I was able to find my grandfather – he was cremated 18 July 1960 at Fawkner.
Now that I have a burial date, I can use this to find his death notice. Next week, I’ll look at the various resources for finding newspapers in Victoria.
Another option to find his death date, and a photo of his headstone, is to try the global cemetery indexes –
In this instance, there was no entry for my grandfather on either database.