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Anne Hendrix <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
A LISTSERV list for discussions pertaining to New York State history." <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 9 May 2014 21:38:02 -0400
text/plain (359 lines)
Schoharie County Poor house is now a Russian Orthodox monastery. Census are 
a big help looking for families. The flood probably took all other records.
Anne Hendrix

-----Original Message----- 
From: Christopher Philippo
Sent: Friday, May 09, 2014 12:05 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [NYHIST-L] County Almshouse cemeteries?


All counties seem to have been required to have almshouses, though Hamilton 
County might not have had one.  A quick check of a couple websites, and a 
quick Internet and fultonhistory.com search turned up info on a number of 
them, though more searching still is required for a number of counties.  If 
anyone has info, please feel free to contact me off-list if you like.

Albany County
“Albany has a case of body snatching. […] Graveyard ghouls have been rifling 
the graves in the Almshouse cemetery at Albany.”
“New York State News.” Evening Telegram [NY]. October 24, 1878: 1 col 2.
"The cemetery is an ill-kept spot, which has been once filled with bodies 
and is now being dug up the second time.  There are no suitable markers. 
The city of Albany needs a better morgue and the almshouse should provide 
more decent burial.”
Annual Report of the State Board of Charities for the Year 1909. Vol 1. 
Albany, NY: J.B. Lyon Co., 1910. 477. 

Allegany County

Bronx County
Possibly: http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=cr&CRid=65710

Broome County
“flooding of the Chenango River throughout this century is reported to have 
washed away hundreds of burials from the Broome County poorhouse cemetery in 
Binghamton, New York" http://archlab.uindy.edu/documents/CemeteryTaph.pdf
"On February 5, 2010, over a period of four hours this historic structure, 
having stood testament for 140 years to a community's humanitarian spirit, 
was reduced to land-fill." http://nyslandmarks.com/alms/

Cattaraugus County

Cayuga County
“The cemetery is located behind the County Sheriff's office and the County 
Jail. It was rediscovered in 1988 when a prisoner escaped and searchers 
tripped over the headstones as they were searching for him."

Chautauqua County

Chemung County

Chenango County

Clinton County

Columbia County

Cortland County

Delaware County

Dutchess County

Erie County
“Major infrastructure improvements necessitated the salvage excavation of 
human skeletal remains associated with the Erie County Poorhouse Cemetery 
Site (A02940.02949, UB 2756) in the City of Buffalo, New York, on what is 
now the Main Street or South Campus of the University at Buffalo (UB)." 

Essex County?

Franklin County
“the cemetery has been put in order"
Annual Report of the State Board of Charities for the Year 1909. Vol 1. 
Albany, NY: J.B. Lyon Co., 1910. 578. 

Fulton County
“The cemetery was graded, fenced, a monument erected and markers provided 
for the graves."
Annual Report of the State Board of Charities for the Year 1909. Vol 1. 
Albany, NY: J.B. Lyon Co., 1910. 485. 

Genesee County

Greene County

Hamilton County
(possibly none; see http://www.poorhousestory.com/HAMILTON.htm )

Herkimer County

Jefferson County
“The Jefferson County Home was located in Pamelia, and its cemetery is now 
on the grounds of SUNY Jefferson (Jefferson Community College)."

Kings County
“Kings County Farm Cemetery is no longer in existence. The whereabouts of 
those interred are unknown at this time."

Lewis County

Livingston County

Madison County

Monroe County
"On July 25th 1984, the cemetery was rediscovered while doing excavation in 
the park. It is thought that the cemetery was used from 1826 to 1863 by the 
Monroe County Poorhouse. No names of the persons buried herein are known." 

Montgomery County?

Nassau County?

New York County?

Niagara County
“Burials from 1915 to June 1960. Wooden markers were removed from graves, 
new metal markers were made and replaced in approximate position in 1990 and 
vandalized soon after.” 
"Rediscovering a nearly forgotten cemetery in Lockport" 
"volunteers shifted focus to Niagara County and the site of the former 
Niagara County Almshouse. Virtually undisturbed for ninety-six years, this 
cemetery had just a few stones which appeared to be marking graves. Nature 
had literally taken over the site with thick overgrowth of grape vines, wild 
roses, Hawthorne trees, and poison ivy. Initially, it was very difficult to 
determine the boundaries of the cemetery" 

Oneida County
“the Oneida Burial Site, a late 19th century poorhouse cemetery in Oneida 
County near Rome, New York, was discovered in 1988 only after construction 
workers with backhoes and other heavy machinery had already destroyed up to 
100 burials"

Onondaga County
“Eighty bodies from Onondaga County Poorhouse reburied as part of OCC 
renovation […] The bodies were removed during the winter of 2010-11 as the 
poorhouse transformed into H-1 Hall, now known as the John H. Mulroy Hall at 
OCC. […] Seib said the burials at that part of the poorhouse grounds ended 
in 1840, when the plot was full and they moved gravesites to another 
location on the grounds."
“It was some time in 1883 that the late Henry W. Duguid, then one of the 
Members of Assembly from Onondaga county, secured enactment of a law which 
gave to the medical colleges of the State rights to the bodies of criminals 
and paupers under certain clearly defined conditions.  This law was a boon 
to the medical institutions, and it put a stop forever to the robbery of 
graves, a practice which up to that time had proved a lucrative occupation 
for certain adventurous spirits, who laughed the the haunting horrors of a 
midnight graveyard and skillfully eluded the vigilance of the officers of 
the law, willing to run the risk of death from a revolver bullet in 
consideration of the sure returns from their ghoulish pursuit. […]
“Syracuse, partly because it was the home of the Syracuse Medical college, 
and partly because of the presence here of a band of unusually reckless and 
devil-may-care young men, had in the early eighties an unenviable reputation 
in the matter of grave robbing.  Not only were bodies supplied for the local 
medical college, but they were shipped from here to various other cities 
where medical colleges were located, and a flourishing business in the 
furnishing of cadavers grew up that was only brought to an end by the tragic 
death of Dr. Hervey W. Kendall, which resulted, first, in the passage of the 
so-called ‘anatomy’ law, and, secondly, in an arousing of sentiment which 
made the occupation of grave robbing even more dangerous than it was 
“Secret of Dr. Kendall’s Murder Told After 20 Years; Story of Grave Robbing 
in Onondaga Co.” Sunday Herald [Syracuse, NY]. March 27, 1904: 9-10. 
[includes illustrations]

Ontario County

Orange County
“If you thought people who lived in poorhouses died young here is a 

Orleans County

Oswego County
“This cemetery is no longer visible, according to the records of the Town of 
Mexico historian it is now buried under the bus garage parking lot."

Otsego County
"'The Poor House cemetery records are sparse and scattered.' [...] The Poor 
House was demolished in the 1960s and today the site is a working farm.  The 
remains of the overgrown cemetery are all that is left.” 

Putnam County
“I am probably the first relative to visit his gravesite (in 2005), 80 years 
after his sad and lonely death.”
Augustus Cole (1830-1915), Putnam County

Queens County?

Rensselaer County
“A human skull was found yesterday by youngsters playing near Griswold 
“Investigation by police revealed that the skeleton had probably been 
unearthed from the old burial ground once located near the south side of 
Griswold Heights and east of the rear entrance to St. Joseph’s Cemetery.  A 
resident of Griswold Heights notified police of the discovery and Patrolmen 
Thomas O’Brien and Paul Spenard of the radio patrol went to the scene.
“The skull was later turned over to Coroner Anthony E. Matera.”
“Children Find Skull At Griswold Heights.” Times Record [Troy, NY]. 
September 23, 1954: 7 col 2.
Evidently in the woods north of the Wynants Kill, east of St. Joseph’s 
Cemetery, and south of (and/or under?) Griswold Heights housing project.  I 
don’t know if anything remains of it, or what was done with the skeleton 
found in 1954.
[log in to unmask],-73.679062,527m/" target="_blank">https:[log in to unmask],-73.679062,527m/
Griswold Heights has arguably been treated on par with the County Farm: not 
sufficiently patrolled or cared-for.
“This morning when the men had reported for work, a laborers’ foreman, 
Albert Iannone, went looking for Sunkes and found him dead on the floor of 
the building.  Authorities said he had been dead since yesterday.”
“Workman Found Dead on Job at Griswold Heights; Fred Sunkes, 63, Died 
Suddenly Yesterday While Working At Housing Project.” Times Record [Troy, 
NY]. May 23, 1950: 11 col 2.
“The Troy [Housing] Authority has become increasingly concerned with the 
rapid rise in crime and vandalism, particularly in its row-type projects: 
Griswold Heights and Corliss Park.”
“Housing Authority Studies Hiring Special Police Forces.” Times Record 
[Troy, NY]. September 4, 1963: 21 cols 1-2.
Crowe II, Kenneth C. “An exchange of words, a bullet in the head; Neighbors 
say Troy shooting victim asked partygoers to quiet down.” Albany Times 
Union. September 15, 2009. 

Richmond County
“Abandoned, located West side of Brielle Avenue and North of Rockland 

Rockland County?

St. Lawrence County
“The list of those buried at the County Home are indexed in Liber 33 Pages 
416-440 in the Miscellaneous Files at the County Court House in Canton. “ 

Saratoga County?

Schenectady County?

Schoharie County?

Schuyler County?

Seneca County

Steuben County

Suffolk County
“We have to report the donation made last fall by Prince H. Foster, Esq., of 
Babylon, of a large number of ornamental trees and shrubs for the Alms House 
cemetery.  They were set out and cared for, and, with the exception of a few 
that were winter killed, are growing well.  This gift is an indication of 
Mr. Foster’s thoughtful care, liberality, and deep interest in all things 
that relate to the poor, and is deserving of this public acknowledgement.” 
Sag Harbor Express. November 1, 1877.

Sullivan County?

Tioga County

Tompkins County?

Ulster County

Warren County

Washington County

Wayne County
“In an investigation of the robbing of the grave of George Wilbur, at the 
Wayne county alms house cemetery, in Lyons, it has been ascertained beyond a 
doubt that during the past few years at least ten bodies have been stolen 
from that cemetery.  Two of these were dissected in the unused room above 
the old Forfar lumber office on Geneva street, in Lyons.  Another was 
dissected in a barn in the northern part of that village, and several bodies 
have been shipped to medical colleges in Buffalo, Albany and New York.”
“Wayne.” Rochester Democrat and Chronicle. April 20, 1886: 3 col 2.

Westchester County
“In 1935, the land where the County Alms House Cemetery was located was 
given over to make way for the construction of the Saw Mill River Parkway. 
Instead of disturbing any of the existing graves, the cemetery in Eastview 
was covered over with 20 feet of dirt and the Parkway was then built over 
it. This old cemetery would've been located somewhere around the present-day 
vicinity of Exit 23 off of the Saw Mill River Parkway."

Wyoming County

Yates County