In December 2019, Mark Pearce, St. John’s Parramatta churchwarden and one of the founding committee members of the Friends of St. John’s Cemetery, Parramatta, shared his own connections to the historic cemetery.

“There are many many hundreds of unmarked graves within St. John’s Cemetery which can no longer be precisely located. The couple pictured in this ca1866 image are William & Emma Pearce of “Roseville”, Seven Hills (about 10km from Parramatta and now a north-west Sydney suburb). They lost 3 children in one week to diphtheria in 1874 burying Annie (2yo) on Sunday 18/10; Charles who died and was buried on his first birthday on Wednesday 21/10 and Lizzie (4yo) buried on Saturday 24/10 – all in St. John’s Cemetery in unmarked graves. Their tragedy highlights the high rates of infant and child mortality in earlier times.”

Mark Pearce
St. John’s Churchwarden and Friends Committee Member