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There are a number of cemeteries up for adoption. If you'd like to volunteer for this project, contact the Sumner County History and Genealogy Society at and we will help you get started. It is important that you contact us prior to any work---this is to prevent any duplication of effort. 

Basically, adoption involves 4 steps: 

First, get permission from the owner of the cemetery. This is especially important if this is a private cemetery or on private land. 


Next, locate any written cemetery registers for your adopted cemetery by contacting the nearest city building, the courthouse, or sexton. If at all possible, make a photocopy of these records. This step is important because it provides for those people whose stone is lost or illegible, and for those who never had a stone.


Third, visit the cemetery. Take several pictures. Record all information from all stones. Make note of discrepancies between the written records and stones. Fill in the gaps of the written information. Add people not included in the registers. Be sure to note the location of the stones---genealogists will thank you for two reasons: 1) Often family members are buried near each other. 2) Knowing the location of the stones facilitates any visits made to the cemetery.


Finally, type up all of the information in Microsoft Word (if at all possible), and send it to me along with the photos. Include your contact information, and keep a copy of all of the information for yourself.


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Note to those recording older, small cemeteries:

Many of these smaller cemeteries are "vanishing" or deteriorating. If you happen to record one of these "vanishing" cemeteries, it might be in everyone's best interest if you photograph every stone. If your adopted cemetery has already "vanished" perhaps you could do some archival research---search old area newspapers for obituaries, etc.


This page was created by Cindy Ball and is now maintained by the Sumner County Historical & Genealogical Society