San Francisco Reburial Mysteries, Part Three

San Francisco Reburial Mysteries, Part Three

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One of the things that really baffled me about the reburials that Patrick Dolan paid for was that his wife wasn’t among them.  His wife died a good 20 or so years before him.  If he was going to fork out all this money to rebury is sister, Catherine’s family, and to purchase a plot for himself, why wouldn’t he have Mary reburied in his plot?

The first thing that caught my eye was that Patrick Dolan has three empty plots next to him.  According to the letter sent to me by the Holy Cross Cemetery staff, those three plots were purchased by Patrick Dolan when he paid for the reburials.  Why wasn’t his wife, Mary (Kelley) Dolan, buried there?  If he wasn’t planning of putting his wife next to him, who the heck did he plan to buried with him?

This is only speculation, but the answer may lie in his will and the messy hearing that happened surrounding his will.  Patrick Dolan died in 1905.  His probate was not settled when the 1906 earthquake and fire wiped out the records.  His niece, Mary (Kelly) Meincke, was administratix.  In 1907, she went through the process of refiling the probate.   At the time, Mary and two of her siblings were listed as the only heirs.  But cousins from Boston found out about the estate and mounted a battle to get part of Patrick’s inheritance.  The battle went on for about 7 years and the Boston cousins won.

I did not find anything in the probate file about the cemetery plots.  It’s possible Patrick had intended for the three remaining Kelly children to be buried with him.  However, with the legal battles, something might have happened to changed that.  I guess I will never know for sure.

The empty plots bother me.  Why do our relatives leave behind so many unanswered questions????  He should have left a note at the cemetery so I’d know his intentions.  Pretty inconsiderate if you ask me.  HUMPH!

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