Slow Down and Read: Death Announcement: William Hope Payne, Jr.

     Searching Ancestry newspapers, I stumbled across William Hope Payne, Jr’s death announcement in the Washington D.C. Post Newspaper dated March 19-21, 1961.  I had no idea that my cousin Gladys Peters had ever been married, but this notice confirmed that she had.

     This obituary also allowed me to find my cousin Ralph L Peters and his wife Mozelle, as I was trying to locate them in Washington D.C. (revealing they relocated to Delaware).

     I also knew this was a “family” notice when I saw my cousin Carlotta ‘s name listed.  I also discovered her husbands name, as I did not formally have this information either and I did not know that he was a Reverend.

     The reason I posted this notice is because I am finding that it is very important to read through obituaries and death notices and not just the header name, as there may be clues as to who your family is related to.  It is not always obvious.  I had no Idea that my cousin’s married name was Payne, so had I been in a hurry, or not interested, I would have went to the next notice and lost out on some vital information.

Sunday’s Obituary: Carlotta Constance Peters Pace

     I posted a memorium of Carlotta and her father Yancey Peters not too long ago (here), but I just recently came across Carlotta’s obituary notification in the Washington Post and want to give her, her own post.  Carlotta is my 1st Cousin 2x removed on my maternal side.

Washington D.C Post
February 1977

     I was very interested in knowing more about Harmony Memorial Park to see if she was listed, but apparently the Washington, D.C. Harmony Memorial Park was moved to Maryland.  This is what I found on Find-a-grave (here); or look below.

Cemetery notes and/or description:

Original location: Rhode Island Ave., Washington, DC. Also known as Harmonia Burial Grounds, located 2 miles from Washington, DC on Brentwood Rd. (1893) and as Columbian Harmony Cemetery. The cemetery was moved to Landover, MD in 1959. Now known as: National Harmony Memorial Park Cemetery, Landover MD.

In the late 1950s, National Harmony Memorial Park was contracted by the D.C. government to move the historically black Columbian Harmony Cemetery, which had fallen into disrepair.

According to a 2000 Washington Post article, 37,000 remains were disinterred and moved to what the Bells named National Harmony Memorial Park.

     I don’t think that my Cousin’s remains were disinterred now that I am looking at the dates that this occurred, but the fact that many other peoples remains were disinterred really upsets me as I have found this to have happened with some of my other family members. I think there is something very wrong when we disrupt the dead and then build upon sacred ground of which our ancestor’s are resting. I wonder how much money they would have saved in restoring the grounds instead of moving the cemetery.

Photo taken by Lani Pottle
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