Category Archives: Genealogy Technology

Follow-up on Using Evernote vs OneNote

Follow-up on Using Evernote vs OneNote

20 March 2019

Vicki Ruthe Hahn

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Vicki’s note – At the March 8, 2019 Stateline Genealogy Club @ Beloit Public Library program., we talked about using various gadgets, and apps, to assist you in genealogy organization/searching.  The Legacy Family Tree webinar by Thomas MacEntee included using Evernote, which is equivalent to OneNote.  I am looking into using Evernote vs OneNote for myself.

The following articles are helpful, but I still have not decided which one to use. And there are other note-taking apps available.

It may help to read about the few different features, and the comments in the articles below:

 

1) Evernote vs OneNote: Note-Taking to the Extreme

By Joseph Gildred
— Last Updated: 27 May’18

 

https://www.cloudwards.net/evernote-vs-onenote/

Both apps are evaluated and compared point by point in the first article.  Andddd – both are good!  They are declared to be the best two of any note-taking apps.

“Microsoft OneNote has 8.2 points for overall quality and 97% rating for user satisfaction; while Evernote has 8.0 points for overall quality and 98% for user satisfaction…. Facebook Microsoft OneNote has 122668 likes on their official profile while Evernote profile is liked by 424835 people.”

 

2) Compare Microsoft OneNote vs Evernote

by Finances On-line, Reviews for Business, Jan 22, 2019

https://comparisons.financesonline.com/microsoft-onenote-vs-evernote

Wrike is another app which is evaluated and contrasted to Evernote and OneNote in this second article.  The article compares the features of each of the three apps side by side.

3) OneNote vs. Evernote: A personal take on two great note-taking apps

 

 

https://www.computerworld.com/article/2488890/desktop-apps-onenote-vs-evernote-a-personal-take-on-two-great-note-taking-apps.html

I still have not decided whether to use Evernote or OneNote.  There are free versions (and paid versions) of each, but it would be easier to invest the time into learning and using just one.  However, this third article is by someone who uses both, and has for years.  Why not?  He says:

“Although Evernote and OneNote are both note-taking tools, they have very different emphases and can be used for quite different purposes.

If you’re primarily looking for a tool that lets you easily capture, organize and find content from the web, you’ll want Evernote, because its tools for doing that are exemplary. If you instead want to create notes from scratch and have them in well-organized notebooks, OneNote is the way to go.

Then again, you may be like me. I’ve been using both of them for years. OneNote is my go-to tool for organizing and taking notes for projects such as books and articles. I use Evernote for research.”

 

MCIGS McHenry County Illinois Genealogical Society 2019 Summer Conference

MCIGS McHenry County Illinois Genealogical Society 2019 Summer Conference

10 March 2019

Vicki’s note – my favorite stateline conference to attend. Great world-class speakers, nearby, inexpensive.  Speakers – Lisa Louise Cooke, Jay Fonkert, CG,

Michael Lacopo, DVM, and Diahan Southard.

I have gone the last few years and will be there this year:

 

MCIGS 2019 Summer Conference

Saturday, July 13, 2019
​8:00 am-3:30 pm
McHenry County College
8900 U.S. 14, Crystal Lake, IL 60012
Download a brochure

Registration

Early registration: (February 15, 2019 – June 15, 2019)

  • Members $50.00
  • Non-members $50.00*

​       * Due to an error in our marketing materials, all early registrants will receive the price of $50.00.

Late Registration: (Postmarked after June 16, 2019)

  • Everyone: $75.00

(Lunch not guaranteed for registrations received after 6/30/19)

$20 Fee will be charged for cancellations prior to 6/16/2019.
No Refunds after 6/16/2019.

We encourage you to register online for the event.  Alternatively, you may download a registration form and send in your payment.

GEDCOMs explained

GEDCOMs explained

11-25-2018

Vicki’s note – article from Will Moneymaker on his BLOG “Ancestralfindings.com”.  Read the the whole “What is a Gedcom?” article here.
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“When you begin your genealogy research, you will probably be using a family tree software program and using genealogy websites. Before long, you are bound to come across the term GEDCOM, probably on a research site or a genealogy message board. People in the genealogy field refer to GEDCOMs a lot, both in a hobbyist and professional way. You will likely wonder what this is and if it is something you should be using.

Here is everything you need to know about GEDCOMs.

GEDCOM is a genealogy software term that refers to a type of file. The letters are an acronym that stands for Genealogical Data Communication. The GE in Genealogy, the D in Data, and the COM in Communication make up the acronym. The GEDCOM file is a simple way to format your family tree data into a text file. Text files can be read by virtually any family tree software, and even without software devoted just to family trees. This makes GEDCOM files easy to transport between one family tree program and another one by a different company. GEDCOM files are also easy ways to share your family tree information with other people….”

New Feature – FamilySearch.org “Compare-A-Face”

New Feature – FamilySearch.org “Compare-A-Face”

August 27, 2018

Vicki’s note – a fun new feature announced by FamilySearch.org – A way to do facial recognition with your ancestors!  Do you have your Grandfather’s nose?; your Great-Grandmother’s dimple? :

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Facial Recognition

 

(Here is a how-to this new feature on YouTube video, that Felvir Dieta Ordinaio posted on Facebook.com.)  

Change Your Password on MyHeritage.com!

6-14-2018

Vicki’s note – an email notice from MyHeritage.com about a Data Breach!:

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Notice of data breach

Dear ,
As one of our registered users, we are writing to share important information with you about a security incident which is related to your MyHeritage account, as well as steps we have taken in response to the incident and recommended actions you may wish to take.
What Happened?
On June 4, 2018, at 1 pm EST, we became aware of a data breach involving the email addresses and hashed passwords (these are not actual passwords) of 92.3 million MyHeritage users.
We learned about the breach when MyHeritage’s Chief Information Security Officer received a message from a security researcher, which stated that the researcher had found a file named myheritage containing email addresses and hashed passwords located on a private server outside of MyHeritage. Our Information Security Team received the file from the security researcher, reviewed it, and confirmed that its contents originated from MyHeritage and included all the email addresses of users who signed up to MyHeritage up to October 26, 2017, as well as their hashed passwords. We made a public announcement about the breach within 8 hours of learning about it (https://blog.myheritage.com/2018/06/myheritage-statement-about-a-cybersecurity-incident/).
What Information Was Involved?
Accessible information included your email address. The password associated with your account also was accessible but hashed using a cryptographic process, which like other hashing techniques converts plain text into a string of numbers and characters. MyHeritage does not store user passwords, but rather a one-way hash of each password, in which the hash key differs for each customer.
Immediately upon receipt of the file, MyHeritage’s Information Security Team analyzed the file and began an investigation to determine how its contents were obtained and to identify any potential exploitation of the MyHeritage system. We determined that the file was legitimate and included the email addresses and hashed passwords of 92,283,889 users who had signed up to MyHeritage up to, and including, October 26, 2017, which was the date of the breach.
The security researcher reported that no other data related to MyHeritage was found on the private server. There has been no evidence that the data in the file was ever used by the perpetrators. Furthermore, we have not seen any activity indicating that any MyHeritage accounts had been compromised between October 26, 2017 (the date of the breach) and the present.
We believe the intrusion is limited to the user email addresses and hashed passwords. We have no reason to believe that any other MyHeritage systems were compromised. For example, credit card information is not stored on MyHeritage, but only on trusted third-party billing providers (e.g., BlueSnap, PayPal) utilized by MyHeritage. Other types of sensitive data such as family trees and DNA data are stored by MyHeritage on segregated systems, separate from those that store the email addresses, and they include added layers of security. We have no reason to believe those systems have been compromised.
What We Are Doing
  • Immediately upon learning about the incident, we set up an Information Security Incident Response Team to investigate the incident. We have engaged a leading, independent cybersecurity firm to conduct comprehensive forensic reviews to determine the scope of the intrusion; and to conduct an assessment and provide recommendations on steps that can be taken to help prevent such an incident from occurring in the future.
  • We have notified relevant authorities as per GDPR.
  • We set up a 24/7 security customer support team to assist customers who have concerns or questions about the incident.
  • We expired all passwords on MyHeritage, requiring our users to set a new password. You can read more about this in the follow up announcement we issued on June 5, 2018 (https://blog.myheritage.com/2018/06/cybersecurity-incident-june-5-6-update/).
  • We added the option of Two-Factor Authentication for user accounts.
What You Can Do
  1. Change your password on MyHeritage.

    We have protected your account by expiring your former password and requiring a password reset. Visit the MyHeritage website and log in. You will be prompted to set a new password. If you are not prompted, change your password as described in our FAQ article here: (https://www.myheritage.com/how-to-change-your-password). If you are using our mobile app or the Family Tree Builder genealogy software, first change the password on the website and then set the same new password on the mobile app and/or Family Tree Builder.

    Changing your password is a prudent and recommended practice. After doing this, you will be safer, because even if someone else has your password, they will not be able to access your MyHeritage account.

    We recommend you change your password on every other site where you used the same password. The most secure passwords are those that are difficult to guess and are used on only one website.

  2. Add Two-Factor Authentication (optional).

    Two-Factor Authentication is an extra layer of security for your account, designed to ensure that you’re the only person who can access your account, even if someone knows your password. Two-Factor Authentication allows you to authenticate yourself using a mobile phone in addition to a password, which further hardens your MyHeritage account against illegitimate access. For more details, see our blog post (https://blog.myheritage.com/2018/06/new-myheritage-adds-two-factor-authentication-2fa-to-secure-your-account/).

  3. Review Your Account.

    Regularly review your account and report any suspicious or unrecognized activity immediately. Be vigilant and report any suspected incidents of fraud to us.

  4. Protect Your Data.

    Never confirm or provide personal information such as passwords or account information to anyone contacting you. MyHeritage will never send you any unsolicited emails asking for your password.

For More Information
For more information listing additional steps you may wish to consider taking at any time if you ever suspect that you may have been the victim of identity theft, please go to this page: www.myheritage.com/protecting-your-identity
If you have questions or concerns, you can contact our security customer support team via email on privacy@myheritage.com or by phone via the toll-free number (USA) +1 888 672 2875, available 24/7 in English. For our customer support phone numbers in other countries, see our Contact Page (https://www.myheritage.com/contact-us) and when calling, pick option 5 in the menu (privacy). If asked by our staff, note that your account ID on MyHeritage is 66505363.
As always, your privacy and the security of your data are our highest priority. We continually assess our procedures and policies and seek new ways to improve our approach to security. We understand the importance of our role as custodians of your information and work every day to earn your trust.
Thank you for your understanding.
The MyHeritage Team

Some Family Tree Software And On-line Options To Consider

Some Family Tree Software Options To Consider

May 16, 2018

Vicki’s note – Once you find several families in your family history, it is time to look into organizing them onto a computerized family tree.  Here is an update on some options that you may want to consider:

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From Ancestry.com Family Tree Maker FAQ

In 2016, Ancestry.com got out of the software business to concentrate on their database.  They sold their Family Tree Maker software to Software MacKiev.  There has been a transition to the new owner with Ancestry.com continuing support of Family Tree Maker support.  

It seemed that I did not hear a lot about a finished stable product,until I searched the Ancestry.com website for this information.  The beta testing is over and they worked closely with MacKiev to make sure there would still be the ability to upload, download, and sync Family Tree Maker to Ancestry.

Software MacKiev is using a new syncing technology incorporated into Family Tree Maker 2017, called FamilySync™. Family Tree Maker 2017 is now available for purchase on MacKiev.com. The new technology, FamilySync™by Software MacKiev, replaced Ancestry’s TreeSync®.

“What you should know:

  • On March 29, 2017, Ancestry and MacKiev permanently retired TreeSync.
  • FamilySync is available only in Software MacKiev’s Family Tree Maker 2017.
  • Family Tree Maker editions prior to 2017 are no longer able to sync with Ancestry trees, but older software is still usable as a standalone program.
  • Ancestry search, merge, and tree hints will continue to work in Family Tree Maker 2017.

How can I continue to connect Family Tree Maker to Ancestry?

You’ll need to upgrade to Family Tree Maker 2017. Family Tree Maker 2017 allows you to sync Ancestry trees, search Ancestry records, and receive Ancestry hints.

The features below are available in Family Tree Maker 2017:

  • Syncing your trees in Family Tree Maker to your Ancestry trees
  • Searching Ancestry’s databases and merging data into your tree
  • Viewing Ancestry hints
  • Uploading and downloading a trees
  • Web dashboard Information
  • The interactive map
  • Viewing sources on Ancestry

How can I purchase Family Tree Maker 2017?

Family Tree Maker 2017 for Mac and Windows is available for purchase by visiting MacKiev.com.

Do I need a new Ancestry subscription to use FTM 2017?

Any Ancestry subscription may be used with Family Tree Maker 2017.”

If you have an Ancestry.com subscription, you can build on-line family tree(s).  Once your subscription ends, you can no longer access your family tree to make additions or to edit it, until you pay for a new subscription.

“From https://support.ancestry.com/s/article/Differences-between-Ancestry-and-Family-Tree-Maker :

Ancestry is a website, and Family Tree Maker is software you install on your computer. Ancestry can be accessed only from web browsers (such as Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox) and (on mobile devices) the Ancestry app, while Family Tree Maker can be accessed even when a computer is not connected to the internet.

Though Family Tree Maker software works with Ancestry, Family Tree Maker is sold and supported by Software MacKiev.”

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From http://www.rootsmagic.com/ancestry/

RootsMagic and Ancestry: Working Together at Last

“Last year, we announced we were working with Ancestry® to integrate Ancestry Hints® and Ancestry’s records and online trees with our software. After months of development and the feedback of thousands of testers, we’re pleased to announce the release of RootsMagic 7.5, a free update to RootsMagic 7 that adds two amazing new features: TreeShare™ for Ancestry and the addition of Ancestry Hints to RootsMagic’s WebHints™ feature.

TreeShare for Ancestry

RootsMagic’s TreeShare for Ancestry will let you move data between your RootsMagic files on your computers and your personal Ancestry online trees. You can transfer people, events, notes, source citations, and even pictures between the two systems.

RootsMagic users also gain the ability to easily share and collaborate with others by giving family members access to their Ancestry online tree. Using the new TreeShare feature, family members can then synchronize the latest changes and additions to both the online tree and their desktop computers.

Ancestry Hints Integration

RootsMagic leverages the Ancestry Hints capability, and as possible matches are found, users may conveniently review them from within the software. RootsMagic then lets you add new information and media from matching records into your file.

Free RootsMagic Essentials Software

For those that are just starting their journey into the world of genealogy, RootsMagic offers “RootsMagic Essentials”- a free version of their software with a limited set of features tailored towards beginners.

If you have an account with Ancestry, RootsMagic Essentials includes the ability to upload your file to Ancestry or download your existing online trees from Ancestry. If you are a subscriber to Ancestry, RootsMagic Essentials also allows you to search and view all of the content in your subscription. Those wishing to compare and transfer individual records between RootsMagic and Ancestry will want to use the full-featured RootsMagic software.”

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Here are some other Software products to record your family tree on:

LegacyFamilyTree.com – has a robust, free “Standard” computer software version, and the option for a paid “Deluxe” version.  I have used the basic free software, and decided to purchase the deluxe for the enhanced features.  Your Family Tree is not on-line.  MyHeritage.com and Legacy Family Tree have created a partnership (separate yet linked).  On LegacyFamilyTree, you can receive hints for MyHeritage.com, but can only see brief information without an additional subscription.

MyHeritage.com itself has a free basic (on-line) family tree (250 people) that you can create, with a full (on-line)family tree available as part of a subscription.

TribalPages.com is another free (on-line) family tree  – Family Tree Maker.  Others can only see it if you invite family and relatives to view or update your family tree website.

“Each ancestry project becomes its own private and secure website that can be loaded with photos, charts, reports, maps, relationships, events and stories. Just add names of your relatives & ancestors or import a GEDCOM file and instantly create your free family tree. Your site can create custom newsletters for each member with birthday and anniversary reminders, recent site activity and send them out every two weeks.”

You can share/copy your family tree to any of these by importing a GEDCOM file from any other site, and instantly create/duplicate your family tree.

FamilySearch.org is another on-line site where you can create a family tree.  It is my understanding that, not only is it on-line, but that anyone in the world can add/change “your” tree.  It is a shared tree.  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latterday Saints manages FamilySearch.org.  You can send in corrections for them to consider changing.

Handwritten Text Recognition (HTR) – New Technology

Vicki’s note – here’s to the future of Handwritten Text Recognition (HTR).  What exciting possibilities are awaiting us in the future technologies to assist genealogy research.  This works better than Optical Character Recognition (OCR) and will enable keyword searches of handwritten material.

March 15, 2018

 

Image result for handwriting

Article from Adam Matthew Digital, a Sage Company:

Handwritten Text Recognition (HTR)

 

Artificial intelligence transforms discoverability of handwritten manuscripts.

“Handwritten Text Recognition is going to transform scholarship and the types of questions researchers can ask. The technology has tremendous potential.”
Dr Patrick Spero, Director, American Philosophical Society Library

Adam Matthew Digital is currently the only publisher to utilize artificial intelligence to offer Handwritten Text Recognition (HTR) for its handwritten manuscript collections.

The HTR application takes advantage of the latest advances in neural networks and uses complex algorithms to determine probable combinations of characters to find the search term.

This enables relevant handwritten text to be identified at document level with automated searches deployed through the metadata, allowing users to easily navigate between highlighted search results.

Now available in Colonial America, East India Company and Medical Services and Warfare, HTR will be extended to Mass Observation Online during 2018.

Hear from scholars and librarians on the impact of HTR:

 

MyHeritage.com and Genealogy DNA testing and syncing

Vicki’s note – here’s the newest from Legacy Family Tree and RootsTech 2018 on MyHeritage.com and Genealogy DNA testing and syncing:

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Perspectives on Combining Genealogy and Genetics

Join MyHeritage’s founder and CEO, Gilad Japhet, as he reveals many first-time-ever technologies that take the lead in and shapes the future of both traditional and genetic genealogy.

Presented live at RootsTech 2018 (and concluded with a rousing standing ovation), Gilad announced the immediate availability of:

He also announced what’s coming soon at MyHeritage including the interactive Pedigree View, the “Big Tree” and the Theory of Family Relativity.

 

Click here to view the presentation.

https://familytreewebinars.com/download.php?webinar_id=826

Ancestry.com – big data leak

12-29-2017

Vicki’s Note: 12-28-2017 Article By Francis Navarro, Komando.com – Kim Komando, “America’s digital Goddess”.  Sounds like most problems are with people who used Rootsweb surname searches.  Maybe worth changing your Ancestry.com password if you subscribe.  To read the full article click HERE. :

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“Ancestry.com suffers big data leak – 300,000 user credentials exposed

Ancestry.com has confirmed that a server on its RootsWeb service exposed a file that has usernames, email addresses and passwords of 300,000 registered users. RootsWeb is Ancestry.com’s free collection of community-driven tools for sharing genealogical information such as user forums and mailing lists.

According to data breach tracking website HaveIbeenPwned’s Troy Hunt, the stolen information was leaked and posted online in plain text. Hunt also believes that the breach occurred in 2015.

In an official statement released by Ancestry.com’s Chief Information Security Officer Tony Blackham, they were informed by Hunt about the file on December 20 and they have confirmed that the file does contain the login credentials of the users of RootWeb’s surname list information. Yikes….

To read Ancestry.com’s official statement, click here.

Read this article to help you create the perfect passwords….”

There is a New Version of FindAGrave.com

There is a New Version of FindAGrave.com

Vicki’s note – this is a good time of year to feature a resource that I use regularly.  You can either access FindAGrave.com directly or click on a link to it from a search in Ancestry.com when you see it as a suggestion in your search for a particular ancestor.

Don’t rely on the Ancestry.com record.  I always go to the FindAGrave site to look at any/all information listed.  There are good clues on the person’s relatives.  It is worth looking at each of the grave listing for each of those people as well. 

Also look by last name(s) only for any other relatives buried in that cemetery.  I know a couple of volunteer who do photography for FindAGrave.  I always appreciate their technique of photographing any other headstones near the requested one that has the same last name. Not all do that, but as they say, “I figure they would want to know.”  Yes we do!

A final step would be to do a general (non-specific location) for anyone with that name.  Your ancestor may be buried in another cemetery in a different location/state.  At the end of life, many ancestors go to live with their child away from the area that they were connected to previously.

To use Findagrave.com to look for out of United States graves do a redefine search and put the country in. It doesn’t always find graves in other countries. Most cemeteries in Findagrave are in the United States.

You can look on the Findagrave.com link below to get an idea of the number of graves that they list in different countries.

https://www.findagrave.com/tocs/geographic.html

I am not sure if theChanges are coming to Find A Grave. See a preview now.”  have happened yet.  The FindAGrave link to their new version is dead. Following are excerpts from two  article on the changes.

This July 10, 2017  article says that both the old and new (Beta) versions are available, but their link to the old is also dead.  As is their link to the new connection https://new.findagrave.com/

“The easiest way to get to the new site is to go to the old one and then click where it says “Changes are coming to Find A Grave. See a preview now.” Or, you can click here. When you get to the new page, a window will pop up telling you a bit about why the website is changing…

The search feature is quite different looking though seems to provide the same options…

Do know that both the original and the Beta version are fully workable.  You can use either platform to make changes to existing memorials or add new memorials…

REMEMBER – your feedback on the Beta site is both encouraged and welcome!”

 

Thursday, March 23, 2017

The New and Improved Find A Grave Shown at #RootsTech
(click here to read the whole article:)

At RootsTech 2017 Peter Drinkwater showed off a late-alpha prototype for a new Find A Grave website. …

Peter Drinkwater is the general manager for Find A Grave, a website owned by Ancestry. While the session was titled “Getting to Know the New Find A Grave,” Peter first helped us get to know the old Find A Grave. Find A Grave was created in 1995 by Jim Tipton. “Jim Tipton lived here in Salt Lake and he had a hobby of collecting dirt from famous people’s graves,” Peter said. “He created Find A Grave as a place to document that and let other people share the locations of [famous] graves.” In 2000 he added the ability to document the graves of ordinary people. In January 2017 there were 157 million graves. For all those years, the website looked almost the same.

“…Why would we make a change, he asked? The code is quite old and there aren’t many developers who are comfortable in it. Modernizing the code will make it more secure, easier to work on, and make it possible to use new tools to improve the site.

The second reason to change it is to make it usable via a mobile device. More than 30% of visits to the site are on a tablet or phone. …

The third reason to change the site is to internationalize it, making it available in a variety of languages.

The goal of the initial project is to convert Find A Grave to new code, not to add new features.”

(Vicki’s note – Read how each database works to get a better idea on how to more effectively use it.  Here are excerpts from FindAGrave FAQs:)

Why is my information appearing on Ancestry sites?
Find A Grave is owned and supported by Ancestry.

Why do I have to register and become a member? I’m worried about my privacy.
You don’t have to register! You can search our database and visit millions of memorials and photos without registering. If you choose to ADD anything to our database, we require that you register so we can keep track of who is adding what. When you register, we require that you use a valid email in case we need to contact you regarding your submissions.

What is a photo volunteer?
A photo volunteer is someone who is willing to take photos of headstones within a given zip code.
To become a photo volunteer, log in and go to your Contributor Profile page.

What is a photo request?
A photo request is tied to the photo volunteer program. If you would like to request a headstone photo of a memorial, just go to the memorial on Find A Grave. Click on the ‘Request A Photo’ button. This will bring up a new screen allowing you to add any notes that may help the photo volunteer locate the grave location within the cemetery.

…Depending on the cemetery location and the number of volunteers in the area, it may take a few weeks or even longer for the photo request to be fulfilled. NOTE: If the memorial record does not have specific information regarding the grave’s plot/location in the cemetery, please contact the cemetery office (if one is listed) to obtain the plot location and add it to your email. Many cemetery offices will only provide that information to relatives of the deceased and will not assist photo volunteers with finding the grave’s location.

How can I get a copy of my relative’s death certificate?
In the United States, death certificates are usually public record and can be obtained for a nominal fee from state/county departments of public record (often called the Office of Vital Records). Try performing a Google search on the state where your loved one passed away and the term “death certificate.”
You can try the CDC website for more specifics by state.

Why can’t I find the person I’m looking for?
It is possible your search is too narrow. Broaden your search by removing things like a middle name or burial location. If you still can not find them, it is possible the person is not yet memorialized on Find A Grave. Find A Grave is a work in progress and documenting all burials worldwide is a massive undertaking for the membership.

If you are adding a memorial for someone who has recently passed or who does not have a physical grave or memorial marker in a cemetery (perhaps their ashes were scattered), please do a general search on Find A Grave (do not enter a location) to see if a memorial has already been created for that person. If you find a memorial has been added but has incomplete or incorrect information, instead of creating a duplicate memorial use the tools provided to submit corrections, additions or a transfer request via the “Suggest A Correction” link under the ‘Edit’ tab on the upper right of the memorial.

What if the cemetery isn’t listed for the names I want to add? How do I add a cemetery to the list?
We have a fairly comprehensive database of cemeteries in the United States. Please perform a search from our cemetery search page to make sure the cemetery is not already in our database. Include adjacent counties and other names which the cemetery may be known by as names do change over time.

What is a cenotaph? How do I have a memorial designated as a cenotaph?

A cenotaph is a marker within a cemetery placed in honor of a person whose remains are buried elsewhere. It may also be the original marker for someone who has since been re-interred elsewhere. To add a cenotaph, create a memorial.

What about the privacy of living family members?
An individual’s right to privacy disappears when they are deceased. The opinions of the relatives of the deceased fall on all sides of the question. Some people are angry to find a loved one when they come to Find A Grave, even if the memorial was added by another relative, as is usually the case, and some people are elated and send us notes of thanks for building an online memorial to their family member. If an immediate family member contacts us and wants information removed, we generally do so as a matter of respect for their wishes but we treat each request on a case by case basis. The names of living survivors will be removed from the biography section of a memorial upon request.

How does Find A Grave define ‘famous’?
Do not confuse importance with fame. Every ancestor is important and every veteran deserves to be remembered and honored. However, that does not mean that they are ‘famous’. An individual is more likely to be designated as ‘famous’ if they were well known outside of their local community.

…the “famous” section and each memorial placed into it are the sole domain of Find a Grave Administration. All famous memorials are maintained and controlled in every aspect by our staff, and cannot be transferred to anyone, even relatives.

Can I add a memorial for my pet?
Yes, when we say we want to list the burial locations of everyone, we’re not kidding. Pets are an important part of many of our lives and their deaths can be a great loss.
You may want to use your family’s last name as the pet’s last name, to make it easier to find the memorial at a later date.
If the pet is buried in a pet cemetery, the memorial is listed as such. …or if the pet was buried in the backyard or other non-cemetery location…

…married names for a woman’s memorial when she was married more than once?
The ‘last name’ is the name that is on the headstone. Include other married names as part of the biography section. The ‘maiden name’ is only for her maiden name.

First: Infant
Middle: Twin Son or Daughter
Last: Doe

How do I update or correct an error in memorial data?
You can submit updates or corrections of factual information for any memorial by clicking on the ‘Edit’ tab on the memorial in question. Be sure you are logged in.
From here you can select one of the following options:

Birth/death date, birth/death place
Relationship (parent and spouse links)
Name
Plot and/or GPS
Marker Transcription
Suggest any other correction or addition

The first five options allow you to make the factual update to the memorial. Once this is submitted, the manager of the memorial will receive this information as an editing request and will either approve it or decline it.

How do I clean a headstone?
Unless you are related to the interred on the headstone in question, DO NOT do anything to the headstone.

Never clean gravestones with anything but water and a soft brush. Slate gravestones from the Revolutionary era and Pre-revolutionary era are best left alone due to their delicate nature and tendency to erode.

Never apply bleach, ammonia, shaving cream, chalk, flour, baking soda, cornstarch, firm pressure or use anything abrasive. Do not post photos of recently chalked or shaving-creamed headstones.

Consult a professional before any attempt to clean a headstone is made.

Reporting chalking: Photos of chalked, floured, shaving creamed, wire brushed, or otherwise altered headstones are strictly not allowed and are subject to removal when reported and/or when spotted by an administrator….

The Find A Grave web site is free, however Find A Grave uses advertising to support the cost of operations….

Who is behind Find A Grave?
Who is behind Find A Grave? Well, first and foremost, you are. Thousands of contributors submit new listings, updates, corrections, photographs and virtual flowers every hour. The site simply wouldn’t exist without the million+ contributors.