Gertrude A. Barber compiled a great many lists of genealogical interest, does anyone know who she was and her story?

Some background:

My ancestor is alleged to be buried in a 1795 Cemetery in NY. There appears to be no burial register (according to the cemetery owner); however someone transcribed a stone there that suggests it might mark the spot of her burial. Whoever it was that transcribed the stone is unknown, but the transcription was reported ("compiled and copied") by G.A.Barber and that compilation is available at Ancestry.com.

The compilation does not credit the actual person who went to the cemetery, viewed the marker, and wrote out what was observed. Neither is the date of viewing reported. Having been burned before by claims that a person was buried at a specific location based on a marker inscription, I want to understand if G.A. Barber was the person who actually visited the cemetery (because her publication does not specifically say so), which means I need to understand who she was/how she produced her lists.


1 Answer 1


The best available answer to this question is provided in the 16 page document The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record, Vol. 142 (2011) pages 5 through 20 , that describes the Cowen sisters introduction and involvement with genealogical research.

That article leads to American Ancestors - the legacy of Gertrude Audrey Barber, that article details the many works and points to the NY State Archives for 150 of her collected works.

In summary, G.A. Barber and her sisters were initially associated with the NYG&B and produced abstracts and indexes of material gathered or produced by others, including church registers. Later, they made their own transcriptions, including those of grave markers, as well as continuing to produce abstracts and indexes of will books, church registers, newspapers etc.


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