Funeral Memorial Cards

Memorial CardI’ve just had a talk to my friend Sue and she commented on the Star Letter in the latest “Your Family History” magazine in which a reader has a collection of several hundred Memorial Cards. He offers to search the collection for family names of other readers.

Sue suggested that a National Memorial Card database might be a good idea attached to the MadAboutGenealogy website whereby readers of this website could scan their cards and I would place them on a searchable database. Sounds like a good idea, so if you would like to scan and send any memorial cards that you have to me at [email protected] I’ll see what I can do about starting a database. I think we should limited it to pre 1918 cards.

clip_image002[5]Memorial cards are little treasures for the genealogist, the Victorian ones are particularly beautiful and often packed with information about birth and death dates, relationships and burial details. They were generally given to friends and family of the deceased by those arranging the funeral. Sometimes they include the time and place that the funeral was to take place so were almost like an invitation card, whilst others were sent as a remembrance for those who were unable to attend.

A Google search brings up a large number of hits and a Google Image search has many fine examples.

The Ephemera Society has a good page on the cards and Victorian funeral requisites in general. As you would expect The V & A Museum has a good collection some of which are online on their website.

More Fife Burial Records online

clip_image002It’s the 3rd of January and I am still posting about dead people !!!

This time the news is from Deceased Online who have sent out a pre-release statement telling us that they have just completed the data for a total of 41 burial sites in Fife, Scotland. This data included churchyards as well as the usual cemeteries. 80,000 names dating back to 1635, they have all got to be on someone’s family tree.

Also they have hinted at exciting news about some major data releases that are going to happen in February and March. I have been lucky enough to be allowed to announce one of the major releases whilst on the Unlock The Past Genealogy Cruise in February, can’t tell you what it is, but it is very exciting !! Still time to book a cabin aboard Voyager of the Seas and find out ahead of the official announcement Winking smile

New Zealand Cemetery Records Online

clip_image0015It is important in genealogy to know that cemeteries are different from churchyards. Cemeteries are owned and maintained by a local or district council, churchyards are owned and maintained by the church to which it is attached.

I have compiled the table below to show which councils offer an online database facility, they probably have got fed up with family historians writing, emailing and phoning asking whether great grand-father is buried in one of their cemeteries so wisely place the information online!!

The information offered varies from database to database and more information might be obtained by contacting the council.

I have included one or two databases that don’t quite fit into the category of cemetery databases, such as the one for Cambridge, but having found them I just could resist including them.

Hope you find this helpful, if you come across any additional databases I would be pleased to include them. Simply email me the details.

[email protected]

District Council Cemetery Database
Far North
Kaipara nil
Auckland – see below in red
Manukau Gardens
North Shore
Swanson & Waikumete
Symonds Street & St Stephens
Waiheke Island
Matamata-Piako Database under development
South Waikato
Thames- Coromandel
Waikato nil
Waitomo nil
Western Bay of Plenty nil
Whakatane nil
New Plymouth
South Taranaki
Central Hawkes Bay
Wairoa nil
Palmerston North
Ruapehu nil
Kapiti Coast
South Wairarapa nil
Upper Hutt
Grey nil
Westland nil
Kaikoura nil
Waitaki nil
Chatham Islands nil
Central Otago nil
Clutha nil

Grave Stone Photos

clip_image002Only a genealogist would understand that it’s not morbid to write the first blog post of the year on grave sites !! I have written about this website a few years ago, but thought a reminder to my readers wouldn’t go amiss as it has gone from strength to strength.

Gravestone Photos is the brainchild of Charles Sale and a dedicated band of volunteers who take the photos of their local churchyards, cemeteries or burial grounds and send them onto Charles. There is always a space for new volunteers even if they only have a few photos to donate.

The site covers fifteen countries and is easy to use. Searches can be undertaken for a surname across all 1910 cemeteries or a certain location can be selected and a surname search done just on that place. Once an entry of interest has been found then a photograph is shown, if you a better quality, high resolution photo is needed then a request can be placed and the photo will be sent to you by Charles.

Donations through PayPal are always welcome to keep the site running and of course if you have any images that you can donate then they are always welcome. Charles Sale and all the volunteers are definitely Genealogy Heroes for producing such a great site free of charge.



Scottish Monumental Inscriptions

File:West Kirk Culross - - 216333.jpgAlthough my area of expertise is England I am happy to note that the good folk at DeceasedOnline have added another 18 burial grounds in Fife to their Scottish Monumental Inscription Collection. The collection is quite impressive covering nearly 250 cemeteries, burial grounds & churchyards across Scotland. There are in excess of 300,000 entries, all these people must be someone’s ancestors, are they yours?

The new additions come from ….

Burial grounds & cemeteries in Fife Start date
Auchterderran Churchyard & Bowhill Cemetery 1756
Ballingry Churchyard and Cemetery 1759
Beath New Cemetery 1834
Beath Old Cemetery 1757
Burntisland Cemetery 1838
Burntisland Churchyards of Kirkton and St Columbas 1756
Crombie Churchyard, 1753
Culross Churchyard 1874
Culross West Kirk and Culross Abbey 1753
Cupar Churchyard and St James Cemetery 1776
Douglas Bank Cemetery 1838
Ferryport On Craig Cemetery 1822
Forgan Churchyard 1756

Image – West Kirk Culross – © Copyright Paul McIlroy and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence