According to the 1881 Marion and Clinton County History Book,
"The cemeteries are located in the north eastern part of the town, about a half mile from the public square. A good side-walk extends to the gates of both the silent cites; and everything within is in keeping with building of the town of Carlyle. There are 5 acres of ground enclosed for the Protestant cemetery and about four acres for the Catholic. And we can say that but few cities of the dead show such thoughtful care."
The history book also says
"From the best evidence, the first interments were made in a private burying ground, a little south-west of the town of Carlyle, but from time, almost immemorial, the present cemetery has been the receiver of the city's dead."
We could not find anyone who remembers hearing anything about the earlier private burying ground.
These cemeteries are now very close to Carlyle Lake and while there are no longer gates and the town of Carlyle has grown to the edge of the cemeteries, the cemeteries are still very much in use and are very well maintained.
This database contains our readings of all the stones found plus lots of extra information garnered from several other sources, which allowed us to include many more maiden names of the deceased as well as parents' names and even some maiden names of the deceased's mother.
What Is Included
- Our readings of the stones where only a very few are truly illegible.
- We added the owners of lots with no markers based on the plat maps at the two funeral homes.
- We added names of people that were moved from other cemeteries during the construction of Carlyle Lake, including to other cemeteries, based on the Corps of Engineers' records.
- We added names of people from the death register from 1878 to 1903 as recorded in Clinton County Death Record Index that were identifiable as being buried in Carlyle. The family might have changed their mind where to have the person buried, after the death certificate was filed so there could be "errors".
- Next we added the names from St. Mary's Catholic Church burial records, including those buried in other cemeteries.
- We added names from the Carlyle Cemetery Association records from 1927 onward.
- Finally, we have started adding names from obituaries and other contacts (If you have information for these cemeteries, please Contact Us).
Hopefully we have been able to mesh records for the same person into a single record, but could easily have missed some meshing if one record used the first given name and the second record used the middle name. We also could have combined two separate people whose clues were similar. Please Contact Us if you find any errors.
What Is NOT Included
These things are not included yet, but could be added if volunteers submit the data. Please Contact Us if you have information to add and/or can volunteer to research records.
- Death or burial records from Carlyle Protestant churches.
- Burial permits.
- Death certificates from 1904 through 1916 available on Family History Center microfilm or at the County Clerk's office. Death certificates after 1916 are available at the County Clerk's office.
- Obituaries from microfilmed newspapers dating back to 1860's.
- Additional funeral home records.
- Miscellaneous death records from other towns.
We made every effort to read each and every stone currently in these cemeteries. We ask the reader to consider the following points with respect to the data that we were able to get from these stones. Especially the old stones:
Factors Affecting the Reading of the Stones:
- Condition of the stones. Broken and/or chipped: Time, animals and lawn mowers have taken their toll, often obliterating the pertinent data on the stones. Some stones have been preserved by the construction of small concrete pads in which the old stones were set. Some of these stones had pertinent information buried in concrete when these preservation attempts were made. Thanks to these efforts, at least some of the data was saved from total destruction. After nearly 150 years, the wind and rain have worn some stones almost smooth. In some places erosion has almost completely buried some stones. Often these stones had their lettering preserved by being covered with dirt.
- Language used for stone inscriptions. Most stones were in English but there were also many in German and a rare one written in Latin. When the stone was written in German we made a loose translation into English and have placed an asterisk * in the comments field to indicate this.
- Placement of stones with no surnames. In some instances there were small stones or footstones with a given name with or without dates but no surname. We used the plat information and death registers to make an educated guess as to the surname and then indicated this in the comments field.
- Erroneous presumed connections between families due to the placement of stones. When the preservation technique of placing the stones in concrete was used, sometimes stones not connected to each other were now placed together on a single concrete pad. Sometimes a family would release an empty grave for burial of someone with no family.
- Light: Sunshine or cloudy days, morning, noon or evening could sometimes help us to read a stone.
All of these factors contributed to the deciphering of these stones. We often would make three or more guesses before coming to a final "best guess" decision. If you have knowledge (documentation) of a firmer spelling or date on any of these stones, please Contact Us.
Many times family members buried side by side spelled their names differently. We will retain the stone spelling when we can and make a comment on alternate spellings.
If you know of someone who is buried in either of these cemeteries with no stone, again, please Contact Us. Give us name, dates, etc. and tell us what section you think they are buried in, or we'll add them to our Unknown section. We'll add a comment that you furnished the information.
Any stones that are in need of repair should be brought to the attention of the appropriate cemetery's caretakers. It is our understanding that stone repairs are made in May of each year. It is generally estimated that only about 60% of the dead/graves/burials have markers in old cemeteries. Although we don't have a lot of the exact locations pinpointed, we will certainly far exceed that average based on names.
Factors Affecting Row and Grave Designation
- Alignment of stones: Often footstones from one row would be in line with the headstones of the next row. It took patience to separate them. We understand that sometimes the father or neighbor would go out to the cemetery to bury someone, especially children, and say yep, this looks about the right spot and they would just dig there. The rows wave, divide and almost merge with the next row, especially in City Sections A & F.
- Plat information: We were very fortunate to have had access to many of the old plats for both the Catholic and City cemeteries. As we tried to make the stones in any given lot "fit" the allotted space for the usual lot of 8 graves, we discovered that often space in an aisle was used as well. We were also fortunate to have access to an old funeral home ledger, which actually stated that so-and-so had bought such-and-such lot and the adjoining "ile". An added factor told to us by a seasoned funeral home director was that in the "olden days" people would buy a cemetery lot and then go out and put their own markers on it to define its perimeter. We also discovered that as some early wide pathways were no longer required for wagons and such, they were platted and sold as grave spaces. Some original platted lots are actually in wooded areas now and we do not know if there are graves there or not. We have included all visible markers that we could find.
- Duplicate stones: In general we found that when the first person from a family died there might be a small stone placed on that person's grave. Then later, after more members of the family passed away, a larger monument might be placed on the family lot with many family members' names and dates. Often the first person, perhaps a child, was then included on the family monument. In some places people actually had three stones due to the inclusion of a military stone. There is also the possibility that a family put a new stone in place after the first one became worn for that individual. We have tried to include each person only one time and made a notation of the other stone or stones.