The theme of 52 Ancestors this week is Favourite Photo. I have a lot of old photos that I’ve collected over the years, but one of my favourites is this photo of my parents Helen Jamieson and Carl Rines.
I don’t have a lot of information about the photo, but I believe it was taken at McBurney Park around 1944. The trees in the background are bare and there are no leaves on the ground so I’m guessing the photo was taken in very early spring. I believe dad left for England in the spring of 1944 so it would have been taken just before he left.
McBurney Park is also known as Skeleton Park as the site was once a cemetery. It was originally started as the Upper Burial ground in 1819 and was the main cemetery in Kingston until 1850 when Cataraqui Cemetery was built.
By the 1880s the residential area of Kingston had expanded, and officials decided to build a park on the site of the cemetery. Some exhumations were done but due to fear of contamination from the bodies, an unwillingness to disturb the graves, and lack of the ability to reinter the bodies, city officials decided to leave it as a mass grave and build the park over top.
You can read more about McBurney Park here.