By mapping and recording graves, developing a database of names and dates, and conducting oral histories of surviving family members, the Red Hill Cemetery Project will record often-neglected voices before they fall irretrievably silent.

The University of North Florida is in agreement with the Okefenokee Heritage Center’s Black Heritage Committee to post the certificates on this site. All of the people in the death certificates listed are stated to be buried in Red Hill Cemetery, aka Red Oak Cemetery, in Waycross, Georgia.

All of the categories on these certificates are listed verbatim, in exactly the same words that were used on the original documents. All punctuation is recorded as it is listed on the certificate. Any discrepancies or items of interest are noted in brackets, such as misspellings, inaccurate dates from calculations, comments that may be helpful with determining information (i.e. approximate date of birth when unknown), illegible names or causes of death, and changes struck through and revised.

Additional information is listed at the end of each certificate. This may include handwritten notes found on certificates, discrepancies noticed for interpreting information, or any additional information relating to the deceased.

In the 1800s, the importance of creating a uniform system of classifying diseases was recognized. In 1893, the International Statistical Institute adopted the first International classification of diseases. It was based on the French Bertillon Classification of Causes of Death, developed by Jacques Bertillon. In 1898 the American Public Health Association recommended that the United States use that system and that it be revised every decade. In the following years Bertillon’s classification became known as the International List of Causes of Death and ultimately as the ICD. The ICD contains a description of all known diseases and injuries. Each disease given a code number and is listed with its diagnostic characteristics. These codes are listed on some death certificates after 1898, usually by a handwritten notation, as there was no category on the printed form to enter the information.



Sanborn Fire Insurance Map from Waycross, Ware County, Georgia
. Sanborn Map Company, Mar, 1922. Map. https://www.loc.gov/item/sanborn01528_007/.

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