Purpose of The CoCem Project

To identify all cemeteries, burial sites and memorials located within the boundaries of the State of Colorado to assess condition, ownership and status of records and all related informational needs for the study of Colorado’s cemeteries to better enhance the knowledge of cemeteries in Colorado and allow for proper acknowledgement for the needs of preservation, conservation and digitization of grave markers, historic landscapes, cemetery records, etc.

Not only will the project enhance basic knowledge of Colorado’s cemeteries, but may also connect cemeteries who need assistance (through preservation, digitization, mapping, etc.) to better preserve their cemeteries through the use of volunteer resources located throughout this state, but have yet to be connected.

The database project attached to the basis of the project will serve as an online resource for genealogists, historians, preservationists and cemeteries themselves. Much like the Compass program History Colorado uses, this will be a more open resource to connect genealogists and historians with cemetery records to aid in research in various fields, as well as allow cemeteries to digitize their records.


Project Goals

  1. Add to and update knowledge of Colorado’s cemeteries, burial sites and memorials
  2. Preserve cemeteries in need of care through the use of a well-developed volunteer network
  3. Use Colorado Gives Day to increase grant funds to provide more opportunities to cemeteries around the state
  4. Create a searchable database of cemetery records through the use of digitization services to cemeteries around the state
    1. Final say in records, official keepers of records in order to ensure accuracy in research by genealogists, historians, preservationists and related professions
    2. To influence the creation of a Colorado Cemeteries Day throughout the state to create a better understanding for the need of preservation in cemeteries, as well as the need to curb vandalism throughout the state
    3. To influence State Law to increase preservation requirements for cemeteries to ensure that no cemetery in Colorado be left behind


Working with Outside Entities

Soon we will begin working on the preservation guidelines for cemeteries and monuments for the region of Colorado, Utah, Nevada, New Mexico, Wyoming and possibly two other states in the region in the hopes of providing the public with a guidebook on how to protect, preserve and document cemeteries and burial sites in this region of the United States. We will keep you all updated and post new sections of the guidelines as they become available.