Recently I (Danielle) have gotten myself into a genealogy kick. After spending too many hours staring at census sheets and databases I found findagrave.com which is a website you can use to find the grave locations of relatives, or anyone really. It’s frequented by people like myself, hobbyists, and the occasional dead-celebrity-enthusiast who must put black roses on that grave! You can also request an image of a grave site and an email goes out the volunteer photographers in the area, who then go out at their convenience to take a picture of the grave.
This sounded like a really cool activity for a day otherwise filled with things like mowing lawns, cleaning house, doing dishes and the like so naturally we took off to the Grass Valley cemetery to see who we could find. List in hand, we explored the lower part and encountered many a grave with no markings at all, a last name in the cement surrounding it, or an indiscernible headstone. Very old graves! And some very cool ones too.
We didn’t have much luck at first and began to develop a system of looking at last names from opposite sides of a section and working towards eachother. Still nothing. Bugs were biting, homeless camps were nearby with trash strewn about just outside the grounds and we were starting to wonder if this was a good idea after all. But finally, finally! We found one grave and that was enough to give us a little satisfaction. On second thought we may have been able to contact the cemetery or city and ask about names but you know, this is more fun!
That night I added the requested photo to the findagrave website and vowed to return…sometime…soon-ish.