The Clear Lake Historical Society has received the go-ahead— and $3,500, for construction of an information kiosk at the Clear Lake Cemetery.
Beth Ann Schumacher, president of the group, recently addressed the Clear Lake City Council about the project, which has been a year in development.
“The Historical Society identified this project to make it easier to find the location of buried loved ones in our cemetery,” said Schumacher, adding that the Historical Society often receives inquiries about burials. The group “did the leg work, research and put data together and created maps with the help of Joe Weigel’s office (Public Works Department). It’s been a year, but we are ready to build this thing.”
The kiosk will contain an alphabetized list of all the individuals who are buried in the Clear Lake Cemetery and the coordinates of where to find them in terms of section, lot and their grave number. Ultimately, there will be GPS coordinates available as well, so mapping applications on a mobile device could be used. Schumacher added that the group also worked to attach maiden names to the listing to assist those doing genealogy research.
The kiosk will likely be placed at the garage in the newest section by the south end of the cemetery. The contents of the kiosk will be covered with plexiglass, with the structure of treated pine also having a small roof to protect people from the elements.
Schumacher says they’ll be able to update the kiosk when needed and will be able to link the information to a pair of websites to help people find gravesites.
“Another component of this is that we’re linking with the Iowa Gen Web Project, so people can look up information there and find out about the cemetery. We’ll also be linked to Find-a-Grave, so people who are doing genealogy can find everything online. We hope that it can help people find loved ones who are in the cemetery.”
“This is a fantastic idea. We have people who come into the City office and see the clerk, who calls up the information on a computer. This will be much easier and available for those who want to do the research on weekends,” said Mayor Nelson Crabb. “Thanks to the Historical Society. This type of public-private partnership is always a win-win.”