San Luis Obispo County, California

The Cemeteries of

South San Luis Obispo County

  Arroyo Grande District Cemetery

The Headstones in the Arroyo Grande Cemetery have been photographed and the Index updated.

The Photographers:
Rosemary Flamion, Marth A Crosley Graham, Greg Pisaño, Vickie Valenziano & her Daughter, Dianna

The Indexers:
Dianna G Curtis, Tom Gorham, Kathy Nienhouse, Phillip Noel, Charmel Pavlich, & Laurie Schneemann.
11,300 Images were taken.
The Index of Interments contains 14,730 Individuals.

The Index can be found here in searchable pdf format.
Database Explanation
Headstone Images are available as an attachment to an email.

Old St. Patrick's Cemetery

    Arroyo Grande, San Luis Obispo County, California

For many years Catholics in Arroyo Grande and the surrounding area were buried in San Luis Obispo near the Mission. Then in the late 1880's the City of San Luis Obispo decided to open a street at the rear of the Mission Church. The contract for the work was awarded to an out-of-county paving contractor. He was to notify persons whose family members were buried where the route would go so they might arrange transfer of the graves. Instead, he removed the marble headstone markers, shipped them to San Francisco, and paved over the graves. The work was completed before this became public knowledge. Even today many graves lie under a San Luis Obispo street.

Incensed, the Catholics of the south county area clamored for their own cemetery. Consequently, John M. Price generously gave some land on a sloping hillside between Arroyo Grande and Pismo Beach. This is evidenced in County Recorder records as follows:

Book W - Page 43 "for the sum of $1.00 John Price sold to Bishop Mora - all that part of Lot 12 of Harris Sub-division of parts of the Rancho El Pismo and San Miguelito" described and then shown on a map of the subdivision made in 1886 and recorded and in the amount of two (2) acres — "sold, granted, etc* to Mora and successors for the purpose of, and so long as the same be used for a Roman Catholic burial ground." Book X - Page 587 "granted a piece containing 339 of an acre 1000 for the Roman Catholic burial ground. Dated Aug. 13, 1887"

(Bishop Mora was Francis Mora, Bishop of Monterey and Los Angeles)

Many old wooden markers and stones are long gone. Some of the old wooden markers and stones are too weathered or damaged to read. By today much more vandalism has occurred. For many of the later years, the little cemetery has had neither much use nor much care. Organizations such as the South County Historical Society, Kiwanis, Rotary, the Boy Scouts and some pioneer family members have, at times, weeded and cleaned, and tried to see to maintenance and restoration. Recently, development has occurred around and behind the grounds. Two of the developers, Bonita Homes and Reuben Kvidt are responsible for construction of a stone and wrought iron wall around the grounds. Church member Herbert Brownlee and Historical Society Past President, Jean Hubbard are completing extensive research of church burial records, comparing them with other past records of the grave-stones.

There are two indexes to this Cemetery: The San Luis Obispo County Genealogical Society  created one early in the 1980's and a volunteer walked the Cemetery again and recorded the data from the Headstones. Both files are available from this Site.

Saint Patrick's Cemetery - USGenWeb Archive File

Updated Index St Pat's - Fully Searchable pdf file.

Barry Lewis photographed what is left of the Headstones - Thank You Barry !

The Headstone Photos are available Online

Saint Patrick's Church Record of Interments 
[Book at St Patrick's Catholic Church, Arroyo
1877 - 1908
 "Published with the Approbation of His Eminence Cardinal Gibbons"
Baltimore:John Murphy Company,Printers To The Holy See And To The Cardinal Archbishop of Baltimore, Baltimore Street

 The Genealogical Library in Arroyo Grande, San Luis Obispo County, California has copies of hand written pages from the above book.  The Interments recorded are for several Cemeteries.

The data recorded on those pages, over 100 years ago is filled with great genealogical information.

 An explanation of the page contents as well as two indexes of the data have been created.

The alphabetical Index contains the following and can be found here.
Line # ~ Date of Death ~ Date of Burial ~ Name
The Second Index is a typed copy of the information written on the ROI [Record of Interment] pages.
This is set up in columns with Line Numbers so that the information can be readily accessed.
The Second Index contains the following and can be found in the Arroyo Grande Genealogical Library:

Line # ~ Date of Death ~ Date of Burial ~ Name ~ Parent/Spouse [Lines 213-230] ~ Place of Birth ~ Age ~ Place of Death [Lines 1-120] ~ Cause of Death [Begins Line 121] ~ Priest ~ Cemetery ~ Remarks

There is a Column that denotes whether or not the Sacrament was performed, but this was not included. This information is available on the hand written pages for those who would wish to have that information for their family files.
Additionally not all of the pertinent information was entered on the hand written pages, whether this was from lack of information at the time or other reasons, is not known. Where there was no information entered, 'Blank' was entered in that cell and column.
An explanation is necessary about the Columns as they are inconsistent in heading and content.
Over the years represented in the ROI, the headings changed and information was not always entered the same way. It is reasonable to assume that given the differences in handwriting, several people were responsible for data entry. 
Two other matters must be considered: The dates as originally written are not to be taken as accurate, but should be considered 'clues' to work with and to be checked against the records at the San Luis Obispo County Clerk's Office.
Second, the names of the Parishioners who passed away may be different than those recorded in other documents - again, these are to be considered 'clues'. I have done my best to enter them as they are written, but there will be differences.

There are 20 pages of entries that consist of the following - A transcribed 'sample' is provided here: 
A sample image can be seen here.

14th 1877. I the undersigned gave Christian burial in the Catholic Cemetery of Guadalupe to the dead body of Catherine Lind wife of M Lind a native of Ireland & who died in Guadalupe the day previous aged 42 years. She received the Sacrament of the Church - M Lynch"

One additional note about the above, there may be additional information of interest contained in the 'Burial / Sacrament Notice' that was not entered in the ROI. These notes are limited to Line Numbers 1 > 112. An ** behind the date on Lines 1 - 112 indicates that date taken from the Burial/Sacrament Notation.
The alphabetical index also has a numerical notation after the Name - this indicates the page number where the Burial/Sacrament notice can be found.
All of the hand written pages have been scanned and are available here:They may be copied or downloaded for your personal Genealogical use.



 Halcyon Cemetery

Barry Lewis has photographed the headstones in the Halcyon Cemetery.

Headstone Images are available here.

General Cemetery Photos & The Unknown's may be found here.

A fully searchable pdf file of the Index can be found here.

The USGW Index can be found here.


All of the photos and databases that are contained on this site and in linked directories are watermarked and are the property of SLOCGS [San Luis Obispo County Genealogical Society, POB 4, Atascadero,  San Luis Obispo, California]. The photos may be used for personal genealogical purposes and none other. They are put online as a service to the Genealogical & Historical Community.

 Site Updated: 29 October 2015

This Site belongs to the San Luis Obispo County Genealogical Society