52 Ancestors- week 21 Cemetery

February 15, 1897, Amelia Elizabeth Petersen-Marcus was buried in the New Danish Church Cemetery in Christiansted Town.  Amelia E. Petersen was born on St. Croix in April 1834 died in February 1897 during the Danish Period.  A family member in St. Thomas, USVI  explained that Amelia’s son (August Bough) had a tombstone design and placed it on his mother’s grave.  She further stated that a friend of the family would take me to see the marker.  As I prepared to visit the gravesite, I thought I would get a summary of my 3-great grandmother, as described below. 

Amelia Elizabeth Petersen-Marcus

  • Born April 13, 1834 Christiansted  St. Croix.
  • Amelia had five (5) children.
  • Married Michael Marcus April 2, 1879.
  • She was a lifelong resident of Christiansted St. Croix.

We introduced ourselves and began to walk through the cemetery to see the memorial site.  Lo and behold, it was everything my cousin described without exaggeration.  To my surprise, there were two tombstones side by side.

I was narrowing down my research on August C. Bough to his only wife, Hadassah Summersille-Bough, as recorded in the Lutheran Church Book, and other partners. The visit provided additional information which I did not expect to find.   Most of my research comes from Historical documents/databases/ funeral booklets/family lore.

The tombstone August C. Bough erected, was for his mother, and another tomb stone for his first wife Mary Eliza (Armstrong), who died at the young age of 20 years old.  This visit to the cemetery, got me a gem in the rough. 

Written on Tombstone : “Mary Eliza Beloved Wife of AC Bough who died 26, October 1894 aged 20 years like a flower within its bloom she passed beyond the tomb with a certain Hope of Grace to behold her Savior face to face”


By shelley dewese

As I continue to search out my history, I am discovering how much I did not know. The more information disclosed about my ancestry, the more I learn and understand how I am the person that has evolved today. My family's research efforts have taken me on an enlightening journey back through the past in the U. S. Virgin Islands (formerly Danish West Indies) and Coastal Georgia. As with most people of Afro-Caribbean descent, my ancestry stems from peoples brought together by colonialism and conquest; it stems from people thrown together, albeit forcibly, by the throes of enslavement. As a result, my DNA tells me that my people originate in Africa, Europe, England, Ireland, Scotland, France, Lesser Antilles, and Leeward Caribbean Islands. Two collections made my dream to research my ancestors in the Danish West Indies a reality. I have conducted extensive research using the St. Croix Population Database 1734-1917, a St. Croix African Roots Project product, and a research and document transcription effort sponsored by the Virgin Islands Social History Associates (VISHA). The other catalyst has been accessing the extensive photo, manuscript, and microfilm collections at the Library and Archives of the St. Croix Landmarks Society at Estate Whim in St. Croix. My heartfelt thanks go to all my cousins, extended "cousin-family," friends, and research colleagues from the St. Croix-based Virgin Islands Ancestry Discovery Group, for their input and collaboration. I also want to thank the UJima Genealogy Group in Coastal Georgia and GlynnGen.com; webmaster Amy Hendrick has introduced me to Southern History and its people. This site allows you to transform yourself to a time during the Danish period (1734-1917) when life was both complex and straightforward. If you have any questions, comments, or need assistance searching for a Danish West Indies ancestor, I invite you to drop me an email. Its.sheldew@gmail.com I especially appreciate the followers' encouragement.


  1. Again, Shelly, so great that you can find this information—must be very satisfying for you–I love reading your findings.


  2. Shelley,
    Again, thank you for your diligence and commitment to our family’s genealogy. Every nugget of our history is a appreciated and welcomed. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.


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