MDGenWeb An Introduction to
The USGenWeb's Tombstone Transcription Project

This article will familiarize you with a wonderful USGenWeb Special Project - The Tombstone Transcription Project. We would like to urge you to use your county sites and county mailing lists to "talk up" these projects, to encourage visitors and listmembers to participate in them. They really are worthwhile and important!

The USGenWeb TOMBSTONE TRANSCRIPTION PROJECT

For complete information on this Project, please visit it's web site at http://www.rootsweb.com/~cemetery/. As with the Census Project, I'll give you "The Short Version":

The Tombstone Transcription Project, founded by Pamela Brown Reid, was borne out of a desire to record the names, dates, and other information on the tombstones of those who have gone before us before the stones are lost to time, weather, vandelism, bulldozers and farm plows, and indifference. We've all seen them - tombstones, meant to be a lasting memorial to a precious life here on Earth, worn and unreadable, or knocked down and broken, choked by brambles and weeds, or simply plowed under. The TTP is one way we can ensure that our ancestors are not forgotten.

HOW TO DO IT:

You can point potential transcribers to the Tombstone Transcription Project home page at http://www.rootsweb.com/~cemetery/. They have lots of excellent information there, including a great "Getting Started" page at http://www.rootsweb.com/~cemetery/howto.html. There is even info here on doing a cemetery survey as an Eagle Scout project!

The transcriber should visit the Maryland Registry page at http://www.rootsweb.com/~cemetery/maryland.html. There, it is possible to see a list, by county, of those cemeteries which have already been transcribed for the TTP.

When the transcription of a cemetery has been accomplished, the transcriber should type up the information in plain text format and submit it to the CC for the county in which the cemetery is located. The CC will then upload the file into that county's USGenWeb Archives.

The cemetery will then have to be registered with the Tombstone Transcription Project. That is done by sending the following information to the Maryland Tombstone Project Coordinator, Kathi Jones-Hudson, at mdcemmy@yahoo.com:

  1. Cemetery name
  2. County and State in which the cemetery is located
  3. Names of transcribers

Please put "Cemetery Registration" in the subject line of your message.

National Tombstone Project Coordinator Pam Reid, pamreid@comcast.net is also available to field your questions, comments, or concerns.

The best part is that, once it has been uploaded to the USGW Archives, the information in the transcription is available in the Archives Search Engine, making the data easily accessible to all researchers. Neat stuff!

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