Meeting Minutes, April 2009
APRIL 2009

The April meeting of Whitewater Valley Genealogy Association met Tuesday, April 21, 2009 at the Trinity Church parish house, 6th and Eastern in Connersville, Indiana.

The president, Karen Creamer called the meeting to order at 7 p.m. The secretary's report was read by Nancy Price and approved as corrected.Bob Price, treasurer gave his report and it was approved.

A reminder that dues are due in June: Dues are $9.00 for individuals and $12.00 for families.

The nominating committee consisting of Sandy Brown, Barbara Smith and John Johnson reported the following slate of officers to be voted up on at the May meeting and those elected will take office June 1, 2009. The nominees are: President, Sandy Brown; vice president, John Johnson; secretary, Barbara Smith and treasurer, Doug Brown.There was no one nominated for the office of researcher. Karen thanked the committee.

Pat Summan announced that the State Genealogy conference will be held Saturday, April 25, 2009 at the Marriott East in Indianapolis if anyone is interested in attending.

Karen reminded the group that she would like to go to the Allen County library in Ft. Wayne on July 25 for anyone interested. Allen County library has one of the largest genealogical departments in the United States and is in a new building. They have a tutorial of the library on line and also a monthly newsletter on line.

A discussion was held on the by-laws which had been revised in May of 2006 and again in February 2007. However the by-laws on line did not have the revision that it now only takes one signature on checks instead of two. Sandy Brown has the revised copy on her computer.

A discussion was held on how to research patents. Charlie Hughes said you should write the US patent office in Washington, D.C. for information.

Pat Cudworth talked about her mother who is 94 and living in Florida needed to get her birth certificate. She had never been issued one. They found that her name had been recorded incorrectly. They were told it could be changed with three proofs such as school records, church records, and social security records and drivers license. They were able to get this done.

Pat Summan gave a very interesting program on the Pioneer Cemeteries in Fayette County and the County Cemetery department. Pat told us there are approximately 108 cemeteries in Fayette County. Included in this number are Dale Cemetery and the Mausoleum which have their own employees and City Cemetery that is funded by the City of Connersville.

The seven cemeteries that have their own board of directors and manage their own finances are: Bentonville, Everton, Lick Creek, Orange North, Springersville, Union at Lyonsville and Village Creek. Out of the remaining 98 there are 22 locations where citizens remember cemeteries were, but there is no longer evidence of one today. One of these locations is on Eastern Avenue in Connersville, where Miller's Cafeteria was located.

Of the 76 pioneer cemeteries in Fayette County there are 54 that are mowed on a regular basis during the summer. Some cemeteries can only be accessed by foot. A single burial constitutes a cemetery. .

They have found graves for 81 veterans buried in pioneer cemeteries in Fayette County.

The Indiana Pioneer Cemeteries Restoration project began in October1997 and Fayette County is represented by John Walters. As far as Pat knows Fayette County is the only County that has a county cemetery superintendent funded by the county. The superintendent is Randy Morehead. The five members that make up the cemetery committee are: Darryl Morehead as president, Paulette Hayes as secretary along withDon Squires, Steve LaFollette and Pat Summan. The duties of the commission include: 1. Locating and defining legal boundaries of burial grounds. 2. Providing and maintaining access to the burial grounds from a public way. 3. Resetting, restoring, straightening and recording all monuments. 4. Leveling and seeding the cemetery grounds access ways. 5. Constructing fences where there are none and repair existing fences. 6. Destroying and cleaning up detrimental plants, noxious weeds and rank vegetation. (Cemetery restoration experts say Round-Up should never be used around tombstone as it damages the stone)7. Mapping and recording each burial ground.8. No one has found a statute that assures that descendents or researchers can have access to pioneer family cemeteries on private property. However, most property owners will give permission if asked.

Some rules for pioneer cemeteries are: 1. You cannot place a marker or monument without permission. 2. All trees, shrubs, plants and flowers shall be planted, trimmed, cut or removed only by cemetery supervisor. 3. Decorative items of any kind that would alter yard authenticity shall be permitted only by written authorization of the commission. 4. No signs will be allowed unless authorized by the commission. 5. Tombstone rubbings are permitted only with authorization. 6. Motorized vehicles or other equipment and animals are not permitted in the graveyards. It is illegal to bulldoze or remove tombstones from pioneer cemeteries.

Fayette County is very fortunate to have government officials who care about our burial grounds.

Refreshments were furnished by Sandy and Doug Brown.

The next meeting is scheduled for May 19th at which time election of officers will be held.

There were 15 members and three guests present.Members present were: Karen Creamer, Bob and Nancy Price, Jane Miller, Donna Powell, Pat Summan, Jim Wicker, Doug and Sandy Brown, Sue Frank, Pat Cudworth, Kathy Keller, Barbara Smith, John Johnson, and Charlie Hughes. Guests were: Judy Collier, Mary Jo Hornsby and Abigail Price.
Nancy Price, Secretary