If you’re looking for cemetery records, you’re in luck! This week there have been massive updates to Find A Grave’s global databases at Ancestry.com. But why search Find A Grave at Ancestry.com? We can think of 3 good reasons.
Find A Grave at Ancestry.com: Updated Collections
The following Find A Grave collections have all been updated to Ancestry.com, where they can be linked directly to your tree:
- Global, Index for Burials at Sea and other Select Burial Locations, 1300s-Current
- UK & Ireland 1300s-Current
- Canada 1600s-Current
- Australia & New Zealand 1800s-Current
- Germany 1600s-Current
- United States 1600s-Current
- Italy 1800s-Current
- Norway 1800s-Current
- Sweden 1800s-Current
- Mexico 1800s-Current
- Brazil 1800s-Current
You’ll also find these records updated at FamilySearch.com as well.
If there’s a specific grave you’re looking for, ask Find a Grave to help! Click here to learn how to submit a photo request to both Find a Grave and Billion Graves.
Why Use Find A Grave at Ancestry.com?
Find A Grave is a free website with crowd-sourced tombstone images and transcriptions from cemeteries all over the world. Last we checked, they boast 162 million grave records! Their catalog of cemeteries tops 400,000, spread out over 200 different countries, and they have at least a partial listing of graves for well over half of these (over 250,000).
So why would you go to Ancestry.com to search records that are already free at Find A Grave? Genealogy Gems Contributing Editor Sunny Morton, our resident expert on the giant genealogy websites, says:
“If you’re already an Ancestry.com subscriber, searching Find A Grave from within Ancestry.com may be a good choice for these three reasons:
1. One-stop searching. You’re already searching in Ancestry.com: you don’t need to remember to switch over to search Find A Grave separately for each ancestor.
2. Ancestry.com’s search tool. Find A Grave has a nice but basic search tool. It’s pickier about the search results it returns: does the spelling match? And is a potential result in the exact place you requested? (If you search a specific county, Find A Grave will only return results from that county–not in an adjacent county, across the state line, or even across the country where an ancestor may have been interred.) Lacey has a great example below.
From Lacey: Here’s a search of my 3X great grandfather at Find A Grave:
Unfortunately, no results:
I then hopped over to Ancestry, went to the card catalog, and searched the U.S. Find A Grave Index:
Turns out there was an extra “t” on his surname (see results below). I didn’t search on a partial name because I’ve never come across a different spelling of his before, and I certainly didn’t expect to see one on his tombstone! But sure enough, the name is not spelled as it had been throughout his life. It’s awfully nice that Ancestry could find it:
Ancestry.com is much more forgiving and flexible about spelling and places. It will return search result possibilities that don’t have to match exactly. As you can see from the screenshots above, Ancestry offers more fields to enter, including relatives’ names (and people are often buried with relatives), a more detailed place field, and keywords.
3. Tree-building ease. If you build your tree on Ancestry.com, it’s easy to attach Find A Grave search results to your ancestor’s tree profiles. If you search separately at Find A Grave, you have to create a separate source citation to attach to your tree.” (Note: hopefully, if you’re building your tree on Ancestry.com, you’re syncing it to your own software. RootsMagic and Family Tree Maker will both sync to your Ancestry tree–click here to see why Lisa Louise Cooke prefers RootsMagic.)
More Cemetery Resources
Get detailed step-by-steps for using Find A Grave and Billion Graves, plus guides for understanding tombstone epitaphs and symbol meanings in this brand new book: The Family Tree Cemetery Field Guide. Discover tools for locating tombstones, tips for traipsing through cemeteries, an at-a-glance guide to frequently used gravestone icons, and practical strategies for on-the-ground research.Use coupon code GEMS17 for an extra 10% off! *Coupon valid through 12/31/17.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links and Genealogy Gems will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on these links (at no additional cost to you). Thank you for supporting Genealogy Gems!
The Genealogy Gems Podcast
with Lisa Louise Cooke
This episode breaks two huge pieces of genealogy news and shares two great conversations:
FamilySearch ends microfilm lending: how you can get the records you need;
RootsMagic adds Ancestry.com compatibility: sync your Ancestry.com tree to your master RootsMagic file and search Ancestry.com from within the software;
Melissa Barker, the Archive Lady, talks about visiting archives to explore original manuscript record treasures;
Nicole Dyer shares a fun family history activity idea to do with kids?do you have a family gathering coming up that could use this inspiration?
A SURPRISE IN MY MAILBOX!
NEW PREMIUM VIDEO!
Lisa Louise Cooke shows you how to use the free Google Earth Pro software to create your own historic map collection customized for your genealogy and family history research. By the end of this class you’ll have a permanent collection of hundreds of gorgeous historic and vintage maps from around the world, organized and ready to use for family history.
The 4th Annual Northwest Genealogy Conference
This episode today is brought to you by the 4rd Annual Northwest Genealogy Conference, hosted by the Stillaguamish Valley Genealogical Society, north of Seattle in Arlington, WA. Centering on the theme, “Where Does Your Story Begin?” it’s four days PACKED full of genealogy.
There will be well-known and respected keynote speakers, including our friend and genetic genealogist Diahan Southard, speaking on DNA; Kenyatta Berry of Genealogy Roadshow fame, speaking on Caribbean research and using slave schedules in research; and Daniel Earl speaking on Putting History in Your Family History.
Starting off with the Free Day Wednesday afternoon, Speaker Peggy Lauritzen will address beginner’s issues in her Genealogy 101 presentation, which is also a good refresher for the more seasoned genealogists. There will be such great genealogical information for all levels, AND it’ll be lot of fun!
Between classes take a chance to meet a distant cousin with the “Cousin Wall”. Participate in the genealogy-related scavenger hunt, the Wednesday evening meet and greet and the Friday dress-as-your-ancestor day, and much, much more!
Go to www.NwGC.org for details and to register. Check it out now — registrations are limited, so it’s good to get in early. It’s August 16-19, 2017. It’ll be a great show: don’t miss it!
INTERVIEW: MELISSA BARKER, THE ARCHIVE LADY
Melissa Barker is a Certified Archives Records Manager, the Houston http://www.honeytraveler.com/buy-antibiotics/ County, Tennessee Archivist and author of the popular blog A Genealogist in the Archives and bi-weekly advice column The Archive Lady. She has been researching her own family history for the past 27 years.
Preserve your own family archive
Items in danger include original items in attics, basements, etc.
What to preserve first? The most precious and original items you have!
- Clean documents and photos with archival sponges. Lay the item perfectly flat. Gently place a finger or hand to hold it steady. Work with the sponge from the center outward, in small sections.
- Keep two-dimensional items as flat as possible.
- Encase fragile items in Mylar sleeves (buy from archival supply companies).
Visiting an archive:
- Call ahead! Don’t trust the operational hours from the website. Ask about parking ? it’s often very limited. Ask ahead about access to archival items of interest.
- Archive etiquette: Follow the rules. Be courteous when working with staff.
- Museums, societies, archives, and libraries may all have collections in back rooms you can’t see?but you can ask for them.
- Vertical Files – in folders in cabinets
- Manuscript Collections – underused in genealogy! Ask for finding aid.
- Loose Records – the working papers of a court case, for example
- Unprocessed Records – not yet incorporated into the official collection
Tips for using your mobile devices in archives:
- Ask for procedures for taking photos with your own device. There may be rules against this or a use fee.
- Capture the source information by photographs: cover page, page number, folder, box number, manuscript collection name, etc.
BONUS CONTENT for Genealogy Gems App Users
If you’re listening through the Genealogy Gems app, your bonus audio content for this episode comes from Melissa Barker, the Archive Lady, with more about finding and using original manuscript records in your genealogy research. The Genealogy Gems app is FREE in Google Play and is only $2.99 for Windows, iPhone and iPad users.
Lisa Louise Cooke uses and recommends RootsMagic family history software. From within RootsMagic, you can search historical records on FamilySearch.org, Findmypast.com and MyHeritage.com. RootsMagic is now fully integrated with Ancestry.com, too: you can sync your RootsMagic trees with your Ancestry.com trees and search records on the site.
Keep your family history research, photos, tree software files, videos and all other computer files safely backed up with Backblaze, the official cloud-based computer backup system for Lisa Louise Cooke’s Genealogy Gems. Learn more at http://www.backblaze.com/lisa.
INTERVIEW: NICOLE DYER
Nicole has been researching her ancestors and delighting in their stories for the past 15 years. Nicole volunteers at the Tucson Family History Center teaching a family history story time group for young children.
Lisa suggested the free program Jing for video screen capturing: https://www.techsmith.com/jing.html
(Full disclosure: this podcast blog contains affiliate links. We will be compensated if you make a purchase through our link. Isn’t that an awesome way to help keep the free podcast free?!)
Visit Animoto here and start a free trial
Start creating fabulous, irresistible videos about your family history with Animoto.com. You don’t need special video-editing skills: just drag and drop your photos and videos, pick a layout and music, add a little text and voila! You’ve got an awesome video! Try this out for yourself at Animoto.com.
GENEALOGY GEMS BOOK CLUB: A FAMILY HISTORY MURDER MYSTERY!
Journalist Helene Stapinski’s new family history memoir:
A story of poverty and power, love, tragic decisions, and a courageous and desperate woman’s leap for a new life across the ocean
Find a whole list of fabulous family history-inspired reading at the Genealogy Gems Book Club!
Lisa Louise Cooke, Host and Producer
Sunny Morton, Editor
Vienna Thomas, Associate Producer
Lacey Cooke, Service “Happiness” Manager