Find a Grave: Not All It Is Cracked Up to Be

Find A Grave is a popular website that allows users to search for and locate grave sites of ancestors and other notable individuals. The website also allows users to create and manage memorials for deceased loved ones, and to share photos and other information about the deceased. While Find A Grave can be a resource for genealogists and others interested in learning more about their ancestors, there are also some disadvantages to consider.

  1. Inaccurate or incomplete information: One of the biggest concerns with Find A Grave is the accuracy and completeness of the information on the site. While Find A Grave’s mission is to
    “find, record and present final disposition information as a virtual cemetery experience”, one area they seem to fall short in is how their data is managed, confirmed, validated, and/or fact-checked. As a result, it is not uncommon to find memorials with incorrect dates, locations, or a general lack of sources for where information came from.
  2. Lack of privacy: Another disadvantage of Find A Grave is the lack of privacy for the individuals listed on the site. While the website does allow users to request that a memorial be removed or edited, this process can be time-consuming and may not always be successful. This can be particularly problematic for individuals who are concerned about their privacy or who do not want their personal information to be publicly available.
  3. Limited information: While Find A Grave does contain a wealth of information about grave sites and the individuals buried there, it is not comprehensive. The website relies on user contributions, and as a result, there may be large gaps in the information available or conflated information. This can make it difficult for genealogists to find complete and accurate information about their ancestors.
  4. The possibility of vandalism: Unfortunately, Find A Grave is not immune to vandalism. In the past, there have been instances of users creating fake memorials or making inappropriate comments or edits to existing ones. While the website does have measures in place to prevent and address this type of behavior, it is still a concern for those using the site.

Overall, Find A Grave can be a useful resource for genealogists and others interested in learning more about their ancestors burial locations. However, it is important to keep in mind the potential disadvantages of the website and to use it in conjunction with other sources in order to verify and supplement the information you find.

WikiTree and the Power of Collaborative Genealogy

WikiTree is a collaborative genealogy website that has quickly become one of the go-to family tree websites for genealogists across the world. Founded in 2008 by Chris Whitten, WikiTree is a free online community that empowers genealogists to contribute to a single family tree, connect with others who are researching shared topics of interest, and collaborate on shared ancestors and deep research.

But what makes WikiTree stand out from other genealogy websites? And why should new and advanced genealogists consider using it as a home for their research? Here are just a few of the benefits of WikiTree and collaborative genealogy.

  1. Free access to a wealth of information: One of the biggest draws of WikiTree is that it is completely free to use. This means that genealogists of all levels can access a wealth of information and member resources without having to pay a subscription fee. In addition to being able to create and share their own family branches, genealogists can also browse and contribute to the branches of others, all while being able to access a variety of research tools and applications.
  2. A sense of community: Among the leading challenges to genealogy is that it can be a very lonely pursuit. Many genealogists work on their own, spending hours poring over records and documents in an effort to piece together their family history. But with WikiTree, genealogists can easily connect with other members who share common ancestors and or to collaborate on research efforts. This sense of community can be especially helpful for those who are just starting out in genealogy and are looking for guidance and support.
  3. Accuracy and reliability: A major concern for genealogists is the accuracy and reliability of the information they are using. When working on your own, it can often be difficult to verify the accuracy of certain pieces of information or determine where a particular piece of information came from. With WikiTree, genealogists can take advantage of the collective knowledge and expertise of the community to verify and source their information. In addition, WikiTree has a set of guidelines and standards that genealogists are encouraged to follow in order to ensure the accuracy and reliability of their research.
  4. Collaboration and sharing: Collaborative genealogy is all about sharing information and working together to build upon each other’s research. With WikiTree, genealogists can easily share their findings with others and collaborate on projects. This can be especially helpful when you are stuck on a particular ancestor or are trying to verify a piece of information. By collaborating with others and tapping into the knowledge and expertise of other members, you have access to a wealth of information and resources that you might not have been able to access on your own.

Overall, the benefits of WikiTree and collaborative genealogy are numerous and undeniable. From free access and the ability to connect with others, WikiTree can be a valuable and fun resource for genealogists of all levels. Whether you are just starting out in genealogy or have been researching your family history for years, WikiTree is a great place to connect with others, share your findings, and build upon each other’s research.