Genealogy Social Networking Day 25 - Find A Grave

There are many resources online to find ancestors. Find A Grave is a site to literally find them, in their final resting place. It involves memorial pages for each person, with places to connect them to other family members as well as room to write a biography or transcribe an obituary. Photos of the headstones can also be posted.

The information on Find A Grave is completely free. It is also searchable both on the website and through other sites like Ancestry and FamilySearch. You can join for free and save memorial pages of your ancestors into your own 'virtual cemetery'. This is great for keeping your ancestors easy to find when you need to refer back to the page. Or, you can suggest changes to the pages, adding family members or biographical information. If you find the memorial of a direct ancestor, within the past couple generations, you can request to become the owner of the memorial.

You can also become a contributor to the site. As a contributor, you can upload photos of graves, or just help transcribe photos others have uploaded. You can also 'pay it forward' by taking photos for other people. If someone wants a photo, they put in a request for it. Then, local genealogists can choose to claim and fulfill the request, go take a photo, and upload to the page. Any member can request a photo, and upload photos for others.

There are also community forums for Find A Grave. You can ask questions and join discussions on various genealogy and cemetery topics. You can also view galleries of interesting and even humorous headstones and epitaphs. Definitely worth going to the forums if you are a regular Find A Grave user.