After my previous unsuccessful search for a few of the headstones that I wanted to photograph for Find A Grave, I decided to give it another go yesterday. I packed up a backpack of my cemetery map, my reference information for each of the 8 people I was trying to find, and a water bottle – and along with a huge hat, I went back to the Hastings Cemetery. Did I mention how hot it was in Hawke’s Bay yesterday? It was hot!
First on my list was a Donald Raymond Roe. I followed my map and went up and down a couple of rows of headstones for a while, before realising that Donald’s headstone didn’t actually exist anymore. In fact, there was nothing on the exact plot that he was meant to be. Now I’m only a new contributor to Find A Grave – so what am I meant to do? Should I take a picture of the big blank plot?
My next search was for Barbara and Richard Dryden. I had the exact plot number and a map of where this plot was meant to be – but unless it was one of the small plaques that had become unreadable over the years, they were not to be found. Frustrating!
Next was Ronald James Haywood. By this time, in the heat, I just wanted to find somebody! Just one headstone I was after. And after a good 20 minutes looking through all the cremation plaques, I found him.
Yay my first contribution to Find A Grave!
Next was Juanita Dorothy Wini King. I’ve got to admit, at this point the heat was getting to me. I’d been at the Cemetery for about 50 minutes, and was starting to get a bit nauseous – heatstroke? However, I continued. But Juanita was hiding from me – will have to find her another day (hopefully a cooler one!).
At this point, I was ready to give in, and go home to my air conditioning. However, I knew Albert Climo was in the RSA Block, and should be pretty easy to find (the RSA plaques always seem to be in good condition). Sure enough….
My total so far was 2 headstones from the 5 I was aiming for, and I had one more to try. So in the heat, I headed to the complete other side of the cemetery and started looking for William Tankersley. When I searched the Hastings District Council Cemetery Search, there was a headstone image in the search results. And it’s wrong! (Must let them know that…) At this point, I was really nauseous and even the bottle of water that I was continually sipping from wasn’t helping. However, surprisingly, I found William. The correct William.
So from my expedition yesterday, I found 50% of the headstones I was after – not bad! And they have all been uploaded to Find A Grave – hopefully their relatives will be happy 🙂 I’ve also claimed another two people to find in the same cemetery – but I think this time we will leave it until a cooler day.
(After-note – I got home and was rather unwell after this. Is that heatstroke?)