Problems in doing the research
ested persons; answering family background questions for others has been particularly gratifying.
As our list began to grow, we decided that the research should go beyond a simple listing of the names of those interred in the Cemetery. We resolved to search for obituaries and other information about their lives and deaths and, as will be further described in the introduction to the section containing the family charts, the marital and familial linkages for those for whom we could find such information.
Three excellent places to begin genealogical research in this vicinity are: the Appalachian Collection at the Allegany College Library; the library of the Genealogical Society of Allegany County; and in the Special Collection and microfilm areas of the Lewis Ort Library at Frostburg State University.
A prime source of information has been the available newspapers of the area. A systematic reading of the Frostburg Mining Journal (abbreviated as FMJ; available on microfilm) helped us find many obituaries and funeral notices of those we had previously listed and also uncovered accounts of additional persons interred in the cemetery. Some of the accounts were quite lengthy, some mere mentions; some were full of useful information; others were extremely brief. [Later research showed that the Mining Journal charged $3.00 or $4.00 to publish a death notice]. Information on marriages and other life activities was also found for some people in the Journal. However, because the Mining Journal was only a weekly paper, covering the Frostburg area from 1871 to 1911, other newspapers of the region, also available on microfilm, were examined. These included the Cumberland Evening Times (CET), the Cumberland Daily News< (CDN), the Mountain City Times<, the Democratic Alleganian, the Civilian<, and the Cumberland Alleganian<.
A number of other “standard” references were also consulted: Thomas and Williams’ two-volume History of Allegany County, Maryland< (1923), Hoye’s Pioneer Families of Garrett Count<y, Lowdermilk’s History of Cumberland<, and Searight’s The Old Pike: A History of the National Road<.
We found two other interesting books about Frostburg that proved to be quite useful: the Historical - Biographical Sketch of Frostburg, Maryland< (1912) and Frostburg Salutes the Bicentennial< (1976). Al Feldstein’s Gone But Not Forgotten, v. 1 and 2, <photographic essays on headstones in local cemeteries, also provided invaluable information.
Available family genealogies of the Clarys, Porters, Skidmores, Masons, Workmans, Seases and others were checked for pertinent information. Several of these are located in the Frostburg Museum as well as in the Appalachian Collection at Allegany College.
The Methodist Church Anniversary book held a few tidbits. Margaret Cupler’s several lists of marriages in the county were also helpful.
We spent considerable time in the Allegany County Courthouse looking variously at marriage records, wills, deeds, and court case records
In sum, we have tried to pull together information from a wide variety of sources. We cannot say we have been totally systematic in our endeavors but we have managed to put together a great deal of useful information which we think contributes to our overall understanding of Frostburg’s history. At the risk of being redundant, we know there are mistakes in this research: dates, names, and familial connections. We encourage the readers of this work to correct us when we are wrong and to help us fill in the gaps we have left. In the long run, we will get it right; in the short run, we will have to live with our errors.
The Problem of Names and Spelling
There are a host of problems to deal with in investigating history as we are doing here. One of the first problems we encounter is the alternate spelling of people’s names. It is very common to find several different spellings, depending on the source of information you are using. For example, although a headstone might read Crow, the newspaper account might spell it Crowe. Which spelling is correct? Although you might think that the headstone spelling is the most accurate one, it is actually quite common to find misspellings there. Many of the early stone carvers were not well educated. Hence, when they wrote a name, it may have
Anthony E. Crosby and Michael R. Olson
28 x 22 cms
Cemeteries, Maryland, Frostburg; Obituaries, Maryland, Frostburg. .
Frostburg (Md.), 1800-1972