It’s that time of year! Time for genealogists to uncramp themselves from their hunched over postions at their computers and go enjoy the beautiful weather. Doesn’t mean you have to stop your genealogy work, though. You can enjoy the great outdoors by going for a walk in a cemetery!
Maybe it’s just me, since I live near a beautiful cemetery that’s sprawled out on a mountain (the other half of the mountain is a park), but I really enjoy walking around cemeteries. I figured while I was visiting, I could do some good and fulfill some photo requests for people looking for pictures of their family’s monuments.
It was quite busy that day because despite everyone’s (including myself) mentality that this cemetery is part of the park (it’s not, it’s private property), it’s actually place of business. And while the staff at the office is incredibly helpful and patient and totally willing to look things up, I could see that my search for these stones was getting in the way of them doing their job. The staff’s recommendation for future trips was to use the form on their website to get the information for stone locations.
I plan to make more trips because weather! but also because I want to build up karma for pictures that I want taken for my own research in locations where I’m not. So I submitted through the cemetery’s website a request for another stone’s location. Then I realized that to do this for all the requests at this site would not only take forever, since it’s one by one, but that while the staff has patience for a family member looking for a few stones they would very likely run out of patience for someone trying to answer hundreds of photo requests. So I went back to those requests and pointed out the website where the burial location can be requested.
This made me think of my own burial requests. I had merely clicked “request photo,” hoping that, like me, these volunteers would be willing to ask at the office for the location of the grave. Knowing what I know now, I see how a little bit of research could save them time and annoy the people who work at the cemetery less. Again: these are places of business. I am now researching how to find burial locations. I lucked out on the first cemetery website which provided a PDF file of all their burials and their locations. I deleted the requests from that cemetery and replaced them with requests that identified these locations. I have a feeling these requests are more likely to be filled.
Bottom line: you’re more likely to get your photo requests answered if you do a little legwork to find the specific burial location