SIG Leader Kate Prugh

We are a group dedicated to developing and carrying out small Find a Grave projects in Sarasota County.

Our focus has been to work with local churches that have memory gardens (where ashes are interred ) and upload the memorial data  and photos of the plaques to Findagrave.  Findagrave is an online genealogical site that is free to users and is invaluable to researchers tracing their ancestors.    To date we have added over 1500 memorials from church gardens in Sarasota County.  Churches include Catholic, Episcopal, Presbyterian, Lutheran, and First Congregational UCC.   We have slowed down a bit due to Covid-19, but are hopeful to take on new projects later this year.   We are all volunteers and no church is ever charged a fee.

As a secondary focus, we review and respond to requests for photos of memorials that are posted on Find a Grave or sent directly to GSS.

We have mapped the Oakland-Woodlawn Cemetery, a historical African-American cemetery in Sarasota .  Containing about 1400 gravesites, our effort involved use of Google Earth and  on site photographers.  Our map, with both sections and alphabetical keys has been provided to Sarasota County (Historical Resources) , local funeral homes that serve Woodlawn as well as community activists who are working to preserve Sarasota's African-American heritage.  Future plans include an effort to reach out to the community for help identifying hundreds of gravesites with missing markers.  

Outings are expected to be three hours or less.

To date, our teams have photographed and created over 1,000 memorials!  We have added to existing memory gardens and created new cemeteries where needed.  Our projects span all denominations-Lutheran, Episcopal, Presbyterian and Catholic just this year.

One of our members has mapped the historic Woodlawn Cemetery using Google Earth.  Here is a map of Woodlawn Cemetery plots and here is a plot listing. 

If you would like to participate in the Find a Grave project, we welcome your involvement!  Photographers and data transcribers can help us expand the projects we undertake.  And yes- we have fun!

Contact Kate Prugh (941-356-7682 / or Karen Johnson (941-922-4647 / to participate.

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