Re: Hebrew Cemetery Tombstones - Sonora, CA #general

jeremy frankel

Dear Genners

The cemetery Roberta Kendall discovered is one of several that
were created during the Gold Rush era. These were in the main short-lived
Jewish communities, that eventually died out as Jews moved to San Francisco,
Sacramento, etc. The cemeteries became overgrown and there was no-one
to care for them.

In 1974 the Commission for the Preservation of Pioneer Jewish
Cemeteries of the Judah L. Magnes Museum (of Berkeley California)
entered into agreements as the successor trustee with local
communities to assume responsibility for the upkeep and preservation
of these historic cemeteries.

In early August there was a special dedication ceremony in Marysville
for the new entrance gates. Other cemeteries include Jackson,
Mokelumne Hill, Sonora, Grass Valley, Nevada City, and Placerville.
All these cemeteries have been documented and photographed by the
Western Jewish History Center, the arm of the Magnes Museum that is
actively recording and collecting material relating to the nine
western states of the United States.

A descriptive book was researched and written by a former director
of the Magnes, Susan Morris, entitled "A Traveler's Guide to Pioneer
Jewish Cemeteries of the California Gold Rush." This is well worth
reading for further information on the cemeteries and how to visit

Jeremy G Frankel
ex-London, England
Berkeley, California, USA

San Francisco Bay Area
Jewish Genealogical Society

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