Devonshire Street Cemetery, Sydney, New South Wales.

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Production Notes

I believe that this list of names of people who were buried at Devonshire Street Cemetery includes details of more burials than any single list previously published.

Johnson and Sainty provide a list of entries from the Devonshire Street Burial Register (2267 burials)1 and the Devonshire Street Reinterment Register (10,059 reinterments)2, the latter compiled when remains were being removed in 1901 to make way for the resumption of the cemetery to extend the railway at Sydney Central station. Over the years, details of other burials have been obtained from newspaper clippings and photographs and from a list of transcriptions of details on headstones which were moved to Bunnerong Cemetery in 1901. Johnson and Sainty compiled the list and it is included in Sydney Burial Ground 1819 to 1901.3 The numbers of the headstone inscriptions, as listed by Johnson and Sainty, are also shown in my list.

The Australian Cemeteries Index internet site also has a list of burials at Devonshire Street cemetery.4

In the list which is provided on this site I have combined the enties from the Burial Register (2267), the Reinterment Register (10,059) and the ACI site (6872), totalling 19,198 entries. After removing entries shown in more than one list and adding a few more entries from other sources (see the reference list, below) my list contained more than 12,700 entries. The source(s) for each entry are shown, with the Burial Register being the primary source, where the entry came from that source, then the reinterment register, then the ACI entry with its own sources.

As at 1 July 2021 there were more than 12,500 names on the list. There are probably still some cases where there is more than one record on the list for a particular person. This might occur where there was not enough evidence to merge multiple records because there is no evidence to indicate that the records are for the same person. Further, sometimes a person's name is spelled differently on two or more of the source documents or burial or death dates might not align. Also, I have probably made some other errors in starting with a list of 19,000 names and reducing it to about 12,500 names.

There will also be records for a number of people who were not buried at Devonshire Street. Names taken from inscriptions on headstones sometimes relate to people buried elsewhere, but this fact may not be made known on the headstone.

There will be spelling errors in some names as the original records in the burial and reinterment registers were written up by hand and are often difficult to decipher. Further, it seems that sometimes the scribe misheard the name or did not write down the correct spelling. Also, there will be errors in some names, as the headstones and other memorials were often difficult to read because of their age. Sometimes a "best guess" was the only recourse.

As noted on the Introductory page, Johnson and Sainty state that "more than 30,000 remains were uncovered at the time of resumption of the cemetery. The total number buried between 1819 and 1888 will never be known with certainty. As separate interment registers do not appear to have been maintained, those of the city parishes of the relevant denomination should be consulted to ascertain if they record the deceased that are unidentified."

The initial list of burials was made up as follows:

Reinterments Register in Johnson and Sainty's book 10,059
Burials Register  in Johnson and Sainty's book      2,267
Australian Cemeteries Index internet site,
records for Devonshire Street Cemetery              6,872
Total records                                      19,198

After merging apparent duplicate records and adding
a small number of records from other sources there are
approximately                                      12,500 redcords

List of references

Main Sources Used:

Other Sources


1. Sydney Burial Ground 1819 to 1901 by Keith A Johnson and Malcolm R Sainty, Library of Australian History, Sydney, 2001. pp. 66-120.

2. Ibid, pp. 122-324.

3. Ibid, pp. 325-405.

4. Australian Cemeteries Index pages for Devonshire Street cemetery.