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Rainsford Island Cemetery
Suffolk County
Massachusetts  USA

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Cemetery notes and/or description:
Please note: The Rainsford Island Cemetery is on an island in the Boston Harbor. The island has a large graveyard that may contain thousands of bodies. However, if there were any headstones they are long gone.

In 1737, a quarantine hospital was moved to Rainsford Island from Spectacle Island and operated there until 1852. During this time, Rainsford Island was a popular summer resort.

In 1832 a small-pox hospital was built (a stone Greek-temple design), and many victims of infectious diseases were buried on the island. In about 1852, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts took possession of the island and established an almshouse. The state abandoned the site in about 1866, and the City converted the island into a poorhouse. Civil War Veterans lived there until 1882, when they were transferred to a Soldiers Home on the mainland. Beginning in 1882, female paupers were sent to Rainsford. Later it was a facility for boys: the Suffolk School for Boys. In 1920, the school was closed. Now only foundation holes remain visible.

With the exceptions of the infant William Haley, George Cunningham, & Mary Hubbard, all of the persons buried on Rainsford Island, died on the Island. All Infants who died on the island, were born on the island. Most likely to Female inmates. Infant Alexander Sullivan, Margaret Kelley, died at Long Island Hospital

Current postings, obtained from the Records of Deaths at Boston, are from 1850-1890
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