Cemeteries Death + the Web

Crowd-sourcing Genealogy at Find a Grave

Tracking Down Relatives, Visiting Graves Virtually
Lauren Silverman, NPR (March 15, 2010)

NPR has a nice short piece on Find A Grave, a one-man operation founded in 1995 fueled by an interest in famous persons’ graves that has become a full-on crowd-sourced enterprise for finding anybody’s headstone worldwide, famous or not. People can request photos of graves in faraway places and volunteers in the area will hunt it down, snap a shot and upload it to the site.

Lauren Silverman goes to Arlington National Cemetery with one such volunteer, Anne Cady, on behalf of Teddi Smith in Florida, who is looking for her cousin Jesse Veitch, a WWI veteran.

“There’s actually an emotional attachment that you get when you actually see the picture of the grave marker,” Smith says. “You can put that in your family tree, and they are no longer just a name and some dates.”