Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Alhambra Cemetery FAIL

Oh no!

I was successful in getting out to Alhambra and St. Catharine's Cemeteries over the weekend, but to my dismay, the cemeteries were shuttered to visitors. Apparently one typically has to go to the Martinez police department to obtain access, but, as it was Sunday, the police department in this sleepy little town was closed.

The two cemeteries are separated by a two-lane road, St. Catharine's on the higher ground above the road, Alhambra sloping down and away from the road.

The view from the cemetery, as we read about in the 1882 description last week, looks indeed to be beautiful, as you can see from this shot we took through the fence:

From the gates we could read one of the many historical markers that surround the opening into the cemetery:

We also could see some interesting burial markers, including, to my surprise, some wooden ones, one of which you can make out in the lower-left of this photo:

Overall it was a tranquil, beautiful spot perched high above the lovely Carquinez straits. I plan to go back again and try to tour the cemetery itself, instead of just peeking in over the barbed wire. In the meantime, you can virtually visit the cemetery courtesy of the Martinez Historical Society.


Apple said...

How sad that we have to protect our cemeteries this way. On the other hand, if some of the cemeteries here had barbed wire fences more of my ancestors markers would still be standing.

Amy said...

Wow, that cemetery has a million-dollar view.

Jennifer said...

Amy: It sure looks like it. I wish I could have gone in there to see. It was such a beautiful day, too.

Apple: That is true. On the one hand it is good to see the cemeteries protected. On the other hand, its too bad they aren't monitored in some form so that they can be open to the public during the day, on a SUNDAY even!

Terry Thornton said...

JENNIFER, Sad that you didn't get into the cemetery --- but good that the historical graves and memorials are being so well protected.

After reading your post, my wife and I were in northwest Alabama yesterday. At an intersection I could see the edge of the town's cemetery and beside the main entrance, was a huge ugly sign. The cemetery was within two blocks of the courthouse and town completely surrounded it. Thinking is was a "do not enter" sign much like the one your encountered, I changed directions and drove to the cemetery to read the sign. It was not a "no admittance" but a huge sign from the cemetery committee stating emphatically that no markers could be installed or moved without written approval in advance. It was pointed and direct --- but the cemetery was open to visitors.

Thanks for your report and pictures about Alhambra Cemetery. I do hope you get back to it soon and with a pass for entry.

Terry Thornton
Fulton, Mississippi USA

Sharon M. said...

I contacted Martinez PD about getting a key to get into St. Catherine's (as the sign says to do) and was told that they no longer have it. One must make an appointment with St. Catherine's Diocese and get the key from them. Here is their website: http://stcatherineofsienamartinez.org

Safe Thus Far said...

Do you know who to contact for Alhambra Cemetery records? I may have a great great uncle there, and the burial record might help us with some unanswered questions about our family. He shows up in this cemetery in Find A Grave, but not in the county's online records. Thanks.