Find a Grave

Last updated

Find a Grave
Find a Grave logo.svg
Type of site
Online database
Available inEnglish
French
German
Spanish
Italian
Dutch
Portuguese
Swedish
Headquarters Lehi, Utah, U.S.
Owners Ancestry.com (2013–present)
Founder(s) Jim Tipton
URL www.findagrave.com OOjs UI icon edit-ltr-progressive.svg
CommercialYes
RegistrationOptional
Launched1998;26 years ago (1998)
Current statusActive

Find a Grave is a website that allows the public to search and add to an online database of human and pet cemetery records. It is owned by Ancestry.com. Its stated mission is "to help people from all over the world work together to find, record and present final disposition information as a virtual cemetery experience." Volunteers can create memorials, upload photos of grave markers or deceased persons, transcribe photos of headstones, and more. As of 2024, the site claimed more than 238 million memorials. [1]

Contents

History

20th century

The logo of Find a Grave used from 1995 to 2018 Find A Grave logo.png
The logo of Find a Grave used from 1995 to 2018

The site was created in 1995 by Salt Lake City, Utah resident Jim Tipton to support his hobby of visiting the burial sites of celebrities. [3]

Tipton later added an online forum. [4] Find a Grave was launched as a commercial entity in 1998, first as a trade name [5] and then incorporated in 2000. [6] [7]

21st century

The site later expanded to include graves of non-celebrities, in order to allow online visitors to pay respect to their deceased relatives or friends. [8] [9]

In 2013, Tipton sold Find a Grave to Ancestry.com, stating the genealogy company had "been linking and driving traffic to the site for several years. Burial information is a wonderful source for people researching their family history." In a September 30, 2013, press release, Ancestry.com officials said they would "launch a new mobile app, improve customer support, [and] introduce an enhanced edit system for submitting updates to memorials, foreign-language support, and other site improvements." [10]

In March 2017, a beta website for a redesigned Find a Grave was launched at gravestage.com. Between May 29 and July 10 of that year, the beta website was migrated to new.findagrave.com, [11] and a new front end for it was deployed at beta.findagrave.com.

In November 2017, the new site became live, and the old site was deprecated and officially retired the following year, on August 20, 2018. [2]

Content and features

The website contains listings of cemeteries and graves from around the world. American cemeteries are organized by state and county, and many cemetery records contain Google Maps (with GPS coordinates supplied by contributors) and photographs of the cemeteries and gravesites. Individual grave records may contain dates and places of birth and death, biographical information, cemetery and plot information, photographs (of the grave marker, the individual, etc.), and contributor information. [12]

Interment listings are added by individuals, [13] genealogical societies, [14] cemetery associations, and other institutions such as the International Wargraves Photography Project. [15]

Contributors must register as members to submit listings, called memorials, on the site. The submitter becomes the manager of the listing, but may transfer management. Only the current manager of a listing may edit it, although any member may use the site's features to send correction requests to the listing's manager. Managers may add links to memorials of deceased spouses and parents for genealogical purposes. Deceased children's memorials that are linked to their parents' memorials will appear on the parents' memorials as their children. They will also appear as siblings of other deceased children whose memorials have been linked to the same parents. [16] Links to external websites and email addresses are not allowed. [17]

Any member may also add photographs and notations to individual listings; notations may include images of flowers, flags, religious, or other symbols, and often include a message of sympathy or condolence. Members may post requests for photos of a specific grave; these requests will be automatically sent to other members who have registered their location as being near that grave. [18]

The website is sometimes recommended as a resource for genealogy research. [19] [20] [21] [22]

Find a Grave also maintains lists of memorials of famous persons by their "claim to fame", such as Medal of Honor recipients, [23] religious figures, [24] and educators. [25] Find a Grave exercises editorial control over these listings. [26]

Starting on May 18, 2023, memorials may also be marked with a "Veteran" tag but the definition of the term Veteran used by Find A Grave [27] differs from that used in many countries, including the United States.

Policies

Website policy is to remove memorials or transfer their management at the request of an immediate family member. [28] In January 2022, following complaints, Find a Grave announced a new policy for memorials of recently deceased persons. [29] Under the new policy, any photos or personal information, including obituaries, are hidden for three months. [30] [31]

See also

Related Research Articles

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References

Citations

  1. "Find a Grave". Find a Grave. Ancestry.com. Archived from the original on May 11, 2020. Retrieved January 2, 2023.
  2. 1 2 "Original Find A Grave (1995-2018)". Find a Grave. August 20, 2018. Archived from the original on September 3, 2018. Retrieved September 3, 2018.
  3. "Find a Grave member: Jim Tipton". Find a Grave. Ancestry.com. 2007. Archived from the original on December 23, 2017. Retrieved December 22, 2017.
  4. Maynard, Meleah (February 16, 2000). "Grave Matters: Minnesota's dead are only a click away". City Pages . Minneapolis and Saint Paul, Minnesota: Star Tribune Media Company LLC. Archived from the original on September 28, 2012. Retrieved September 8, 2012.
  5. "Entity No. 2442925-0151". Utah Secretary of State. 1998. Archived from the original on January 19, 2012. Retrieved November 11, 2011.
  6. "Entity No. 4729413-0143". Utah Secretary of State. 2000. Archived from the original on April 6, 2012. Retrieved November 11, 2011.
  7. "Division of Corporations Entity File No. 3168328". Delaware Department of State. 2000. Archived from the original on July 21, 2011. Retrieved November 11, 2011.
  8. Silverman, Lauren (March 14, 2010). "Tracking Down Relatives, Visiting Graves Virtually". Washington, D.C.: National Public Radio. Archived from the original on June 28, 2011. Retrieved September 28, 2011. "At some point, I said, 'I am sick of drawing the lines of who is famous and who isn't. I'm just going to accept everyone,' " Tipton says.
  9. "Find a Grave FAQ: What can I include in a non-famous bio?". Find a Grave. Ancestry.com. Archived from the original on December 23, 2017. Retrieved December 22, 2017.
  10. "Ancestry.com Acquires Find A Grave". Ancestry.com. Archived from the original on October 7, 2013. Retrieved October 1, 2013.
  11. "Find A Grave – the same and yet different!". UpFront with NGS. National Genealogical Society. July 10, 2017. Archived from the original on August 10, 2017. Retrieved August 10, 2017.
  12. "Find A Grave Help". Find A Grave. Ancestry.com. Archived from the original on December 18, 2017. Retrieved December 22, 2017.
  13. Loudon, Bennett J. (September 2, 2011). "Civil War history carved in stone in Pittsford". Democrat and Chronicle . Gannett Company. Archived from the original on September 18, 2020. Retrieved July 29, 2020.
  14. Moody, Sharon Tate (January 24, 2010). "Find A Grave can shorten the search". The Tampa Tribune . Tampa Media Group. Archived from the original on January 13, 2012. Retrieved December 28, 2011. The entries with tombstone photographs obviously are reliable, but if the entry is based only on a paper record of the interment (without a photograph), it's easy to mistype the date, so you're bound to find errors.
  15. "Find A Grave member: International Wargraves Photography Project". Find a Grave. Ancestry.com. Archived from the original on December 23, 2017. Retrieved December 22, 2017.
  16. "Family Members". Archived from the original on June 4, 2023. Retrieved June 4, 2023.
  17. "Memorial Information". Find a Grave .
  18. "Find A Grave Help: How do I request a grave photo?". Find a Grave. Ancestry.com. Archived from the original on December 18, 2017. Retrieved December 22, 2017.
  19. "'Find A Grave' Cemetery Database Resources". Highlander.com. Parachute, CO. December 19, 2018. Archived from the original on December 2, 2020. Retrieved November 22, 2020.
  20. "Searching the Cemetery: Find a Grave.com". Rutherford Public Library. Rutherford, NJ. Archived from the original on October 16, 2021. Retrieved November 22, 2020.
  21. Dickerson, Melissa (2016). 10 Tips for Searching the Find a Grave website for your family history & genealogy. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform. ISBN   978-1534710405. OCLC   967966290.
  22. Pierre-Louis, Marian (July 11, 2015). "4 Ways to Research in a Cemetery". Legacy News Family Tree. Archived from the original on April 15, 2021. Retrieved November 22, 2020.
  23. "Claim to Fame: Medal of Honor Recipients". Find a Grave. Ancestry.com. Archived from the original on December 23, 2017. Retrieved December 22, 2017.
  24. "Claim to Fame: Religious figures". Find a Grave. Ancestry.com. Archived from the original on December 23, 2017. Retrieved December 22, 2017.
  25. "Claim to Fame: Educators". Find a Grave. Ancestry.com. Archived from the original on December 23, 2017. Retrieved December 22, 2017.
  26. "What are the standards for a famous Bio?". Find a Grave. Ancestry.com.
  27. "Designate this person as a veteran". Find A Grave. Ancestry.com. Archived from the original on June 12, 2023. Retrieved June 12, 2023.
  28. "Request to Manage". FindaGrave.com. Ancestry.com. Archived from the original on July 25, 2022. Retrieved June 8, 2022.
  29. Reid, Katie (August 25, 2019). "How Ancestry.com's Find A Grave Encourages Bad Actors and Bad Data". OneZero. Medium.com. Archived from the original on May 19, 2022. Retrieved June 2, 2022.
  30. Neill, Michael John (March 31, 2020). "FindAGrave Can Hold Off on the Recently Deceased". Rootdig.com (blog). Archived from the original on September 27, 2022. Retrieved June 8, 2022.
  31. "January 11, 2022 Find a Grave Team Memorials for the Recently Deceased". FindaGrave.com. Ancestry.com. January 11, 2022. Archived from the original on June 2, 2022. Retrieved June 2, 2022.

Sources