When I started recording memorials on FindaGrave, my desire was to help provide original information on burials that was difficult to find elsewhere. I reasoned that an accurate account of headstone, cemetery records, and other information related to the burials would enhance people's genealogical research, helping to add new information or confirm that which they had already gleaned from other sources.
However, a great number of people have decided it is a resource better suited to making a free family tree where they can replace what can be found at the gravesite with information from other sources (along with any mistakes that it may contain). If some family tree says they are buried in some cemetery, why bother checking? Just plop the memorial there. Found a death certificate that says where they were buried? That has to be the one, since none of us have seen any errors on a death certificate. Don't know the cemetery at all? Just plop them in one you think is close by or leave it as "burial unknown", maybe somebody will go through the trouble of contacting you after they put in the hard work to actually find the grave in another cemetery. Either way, you still get to claim ownership of the memorial because you "found" the grave first.
Because of these things, I probably won't be adding a great deal more memorials to FindaGrave. The effort to physically locate the graves and accurately record them just isn't worth it if the reality of the website being more like "Their-Grave-Might-Be-There.com" is good enough for the majority of members.
"Find a Grave's mission is to find, record and present final disposition information from around the world as a virtual cemetery experience". (That's their wording). I don't feel a memorial here should be a repository for transcriptions of census records, marriage certificates, or other source materials that are widely available elsewhere online unless it is the type of thing you might engrave on the tombstone, include in a eulogy, or put in the newspaper obituary of your loved ones. If you want to write the information into a nice biography or story of some type, that would be great to add, but please don't just send things like raw census data. I'll add obituaries for you, but I'm not very comfortable with those that were written less than 50 years ago unless any names of people still living are used only with their permission. Otherwise, putting dashed lines in place of their names or just using excerpts of the obituary without the names of those who may still be alive is what I prefer. As you may have noticed when you read the Find A Grave rules on obituaries, any obituary you wish to have added needs to include the name and date of the newspaper from which it came. I also suggest including the volume and issue number of the paper as well, just in case some of the people you are hoping will see it also want to include an original source citation in their geneological records.
"This is the stone of his first wife wife, Sarah. I've seen this broken stone & read/transcribed it. It is not Lacy's. If you look really close at the top it says, 'wife of'. Her name, Sarah, is broken off but should have been photographed because its close to this part of the stone. "
That first wife Sarah is at this memorial #77871811 Could you please delete the photo from Lacy and add it to Sarah? And, evidently I have Lacy in the wrong place but I didn't want to delete this duplicate memorial without saving your headstone photo of Sarah. Thank you
#86686054 Hi there! You were nice enough to set up a memorial for one of my great grandmothers, Kate Robinson Patterson, #86686054, and even added a pic. Can't thank you enough.
Recently I started doing serious work on the women in my family tree. And just recently I was able to crack Kate's code! Thus, I would like to make a couple changes and additions to her Find A Grave page.
First and foremost, I would like to update her maiden name to Robertson instead of Robinson. Robinson is the name I found in not only my family bible with her husband William, it's also in the Fleming Family Genealogy - her husband William Patterson's mother's family - her inlaws.
I suspect that the translation of her name occurred because that is what the family actual thought her last name was - not a big leap from one to the other! Possibly that is what is also in the cemetery records. When she died, her brothers and other family had moved on already so no one was there to correct William if he spelled it one way instead of the other. And the children were young when she died so they all took William's word, and thus recorded that name in the bible. But the census records as well as the marriage records indicate Robertson is the correct spelling. I would like to have both names noted in the information section for those looking for her in the future.
Additionally, Kate is found most often in the official records under her full name of Catherine instead of Kate. I also discovered that Catherine is actually the middle name - she was named Pamela (like me!) but never used that name as she grew. So, officially, her name is Pamela Catherine 'Kate' Robertson Patterson.
And I'd like to give her a birth date. Based on the consistent census responses and her headstone, she was born in Kentucky in 1843. When she died in 1880, it was one month after the census was taken where she stated she was 37, which jives with all but one of the other census dates (only one gave 1844). If the missing 'months' on her stone is a number of 10 or 11, that easily places her birth in 1843 yet she could still be 36 years old and on the cusp of her birthday when she did the census and then died, easily accounting for the 37 on the census and 36 + something on the headstone.
Thank you again for taking the time to photograph the stones and post them with the information you have gathered. I know how much time that takes - I've uploaded a good share of photos of stones here mself - and it is invaluable to genealogists like me! Thank you thank you! Pam Laning
Clarkson/Callahan Family Hi Quentin, I want to thank you for the transfers of my relatives. I appreciate so much the work you do for FindAGrave. I know there is a lot of time and money involved in going to cemeteries and taking pictures, adding them to the site. Just know that what you do will matter in years to come for so many.
ps Hello - I have thought about this further and then I keep logging out before sending this thought.
I think it is OK to simply edit the phrase to the following:
"took place at 12 o'clock, noon" or similar to that..."took place at 12 o'clock, p.m." (They used smaller case then.)
On second thought, however, I do think the original accurate, as they sought to differentiate AM from PM or noon from midnight although, common sense, no funeral would be given at midnight. So it's clunky regardless.