JewishGen Discussion Group #JewishGen Re: Burial Societies: Next Steps to Take? #general

Ira Leviton

Dear Cousins,

Alex Magocsi sought information about the Fidelis Society, which had a
plot a Mount Zion Cemetery in Maspeth (Queens), N.Y., and asked whether
the burial society exited, where their records might be found, and whether
the cemetery might have more information than that available on-line?
Their first burial was in 1937, the last was 1987.

Here are some things to do to obtain more information for any "burial

1. Call the cemetery. They keep a last known contact number, usually the
group's president, cemetery committee chairman, or equivalent, for every
society. They usually don't know whether or not the group still exists,
but they always have somebody's name on record, whether it's somebody who
died 50 years ago, or a contact person who had nothing to do with a
disbanded group but received a small amount of money to arrange for
burials that were reserved while the group was still in existence.

2. Get the exact name of the group >from the cemetery. Then look on line
via to see if there are other cemeteries (in
this case in the New York City area, which includes Queens, Brooklyn,
Staten Island, Long Island, Westchester, and New Jersey) in which the
group may own another plot. The plot at Maspeth may have been filled, or
the fallen into disrepair, or simply fallen out of favor with the
membership for a newer cemetery, which may still be active, or at least
have more recent information.

3. Especially if this burial society was a landsmanshaft, call YIVO or
search their information at
(unfortunately, in this case, Fidelis is not listed).

4. Assuming that this group is or was a non-profit corporation in the
State of New York, call the New York State Department of State to see if
they have any current information (unlikely, but worth a try), or
information about a merger with another group or a name change.


Ira Leviton
New York, N.Y.

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