Take Photos of Gravestones at Your Local Cemetery


BillionGraves’ mission is to preserve the world's cemeteries, one headstone at a time. Each gravestone is marked with a GPS location, making them readily available for free for millions of families around the globe for genealogical research for generations to come. 

Across the world, gravestones are deteriorating and erosion is erasing the precious details of our ancestor’s lives. With BillionGraves, even if a loved one’s gravestone is damaged or worn by time, the invaluable information recorded at their final resting place will still be available. 

How can you help? Grab your smartphone, download the free BillionGraves app and head out to your local cemetery. It's as easy as taking pictures of each grave as you walk along. The app will capture the GPS location automatically and in just a short visit hundreds of records can be preserved. When you are finished upload the photos - with one click of a button - so everyone can use them for family history and to keep the memories alive of those you honor and love.

Getting Started:

• Download the free BillionGraves app to your smartphone. 

• After opening the app click on the “Cemeteries” button. 

• Click the pin of your choice. 

• Click on the name of the cemetery, which will open the cemetery information. 

• Click on “Headstone Images” to see a map of the cemetery. 

• Pins represent gravestones that have already had photos taken. Look for a section of the cemetery without pins. 

• Zoom-in as needed. 

• Begin taking photos. 

Photo-taking Tips:

• Stand to the side to avoid casting a shadow. 

• Remove weeds, grass, or other debris that may block gravestone information. 

• Be sure names and dates are inside the photo frame. 

• Use the link icon in the corner of the screen to connect photos. This may be done for gravestones with multiple sides or to link family members. 

• Use the pencil icon in the corner of the screen to label stones that may be difficult for transcribers to read. 

• When you are done, click on “upload photos”. You can do this after you return home using a Wi-fi connection or at the cemetery with data. 

If you are the project leader go to to adopt your cemetery and to declare it complete when all the gravestones have been photographed. 

Sour grapes!  You don't want good information too badly, you refused my off to take photos with GPS in exif for about 20 cemeteries in my area that have never been inventoried.  Your loss, I'll just continue to provide photos of gravesites requested in FindAGrave - they at least appreciate the effort.  Humbug!

1 person likes this

We do want photographs with or without GPS.  GPS records are our primary source record, but we also accept records outside of our app these are called supporting records.  They are placed in a cemetery just like Find A Grave records. Supporting records are considered secondary records as without GPS as they can't be verified. We have learned that photos taken outside of an Android or iPhone format are usually off up to 1/4 mile or more. Android and iPhones are hooked up with satellites much more frequently than other devices.  This is why we prefer the use of these formats to those in cameras. We are sorry for your disappointment. 

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