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Cemetery records

What are cemetery records and what kind of information can I find in them?

Cemetery caretakers usually keep records of the names and death dates of those buried, as well as maps of the grave sites. They may also keep more detailed records, including the names of the deceased's relatives. In addition to these paper records, you will find tombstones. Tombstones can provide information such as birth and death dates and the names of other family members.

Where can I find cemetery records?

The best place to find cemetery records are in the cemeteries where your ancestors are buried. Often, if there is no longer a caretaker of the cemetery, records can be found in the holdings of local libraries, archives, or historical societies. The American Blue Book of Funeral Directors is a list of cemeteries by location. It may help you create a target list of cemeteries for your ancestors if you don't know where they are buried. In addition, the Daughters of American Revolution (DAR), Works Projects Administration (WPA), and the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers (DUP) have all transcribed some tombstones. Collections of transcribed tombstones can be found at the Family History Library of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and the Library of the Daughters of the American Revolution.

Also check with genealogy societies in the area where you ancestors were buried; they may know of tombstone transcriptions for local cemeteries.

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