*** Please note*** Only transcribe information written on the stone unless you have sources!***

In order to understand where to begin, we will start with the boxes on the page and what each of them are for:

Definitions of each of the boxes on the transcription page and what should be typed in them. 

Simple Mode

Prefix- Title of an individual. Only place if it is written on the headstone or if you have sources. Example: Mrs., Miss, Dr., General, Captain, Herr, Frau, Fraulein, etc.

Given Name- First and middle name of an individual

Family Name- Surname

Suffix- Title of an individual, or generational indicator. Examples: M.D.- Doctor, or Sr., Jr., III

Birth- Date of birth found on the headstone

Death- Date of death found on the headstone

Note: Please do not transcribe in all caps.  Also, please include punctuation. 


Advanced Mode

All of the above boxes plus:

Marriage- Date of marriage if found on the headstone. (Can also be added with sources.) 

Age at Death- Death date in Years, Months and Days are sometimes found on older stones. 

Links in the Transcribe Photos Box

Now that we have listed the boxes for transcription, let's go over the links also found in the Transcribe Photos box.

Simple Mode/Advanced Mode- When this is clicked, you can toggle back and forth between the simple transcription form and the advanced transcription mode.

FamilySearch- When you click on this button, the BillionGraves system will match the BillionGraves records with a FamilySearch record. It will also give the Personal Identification Number (PID) found in FamilySearch. You will be given the option of accepting or rejecting the match. Compare both records for names and dates. If the two records are an EXACT match, click on the "Accept" button.

Show Hebrew Dates- Hebrew dates are different than those on the Gregorian calendar (which is the calendar most often in use today). Hebrew dates are to be added only if these dates are on the headstones. They are usually seen in a Jewish Cemetery or on Jewish Headstones.

Choose Religion- Typically for military headstones. Sometimes religious insignia is present on the headstone. Choose the religion based on the symbols present on a headstone. Our list of religious symbols comes from the US Military Veteran's Religious symbols database. The religious symbols database does not currently have every religion represented. 

Add Military Info- Add military information listed on the headstone in this box. To add further details, you can also go to the individual's Life Information Page.

Others Not Buried Here- Headstones will sometimes have family member's names on them, such as children of the deceased, even when they are not buried here.  Add these names here. Do not add these in as separate individuals buried here, because this is simply not the case. These stones often look like this:

Notice there are no birth or death dates. So, these individuals may still be living. 


Other Links and Boxes on the Transcription Page

Edit- Allows a transcriber to edit information on the headstone by opening up the transcription boxes. 


Hide- Allows a transcriber to hid the transcription box. This function is next to the FamilySearch link. 

FamilySearch- FamilySearch will attempt to match the record with a record in their tree. Please make sure these match completely. If you do not want to participate click the "x" and it will remove it from your screen. 

Add Person- If there are two individuals or more listed on a monument or marker, you can add a separate transcription for each individual.

Red Box with a Flag- These are used to rate an image, these links let a photographer know there is a problem with the photo. 

Blue Box with Language Symbols- Is the headstone you are transcribing in another language? You can set the image to another language for other transcribers. (For example, most stones in the cemetery are in English, but this one is in Hebrew. Set the stone to Hebrew so that users who are fluent in Hebrew can transcribe the stone.) We have dozens of languages to choose from, so the stones are transcribed by the right volunteers.  



When this box is clicked on the following two sections will appear. 

Epitaph-If the monuments have notes or poems, record them in the epitaph section. Terms such as "Rest In Peace" or "Sacred to the Memory"  are common. Sometimes poetry or religious references are present. 

Notes- If you can not read the grave well, but you have proof as to who is buried there, put the information in the notes section. Be sure to include sources (books, websites, oral interviews, etc.). Or If you have family information pertaining to the individual a short reference is helpful. 

For example: This stone was unreadable, but I found the information in this book: Grave Images of Trinity Graveyard, New York City.

Another Example: Married three times to Jane Smith, Sarah Jones, and Hannah Simmons, who are all buried in Holy Grace Cemetery.

To learn how to transcribe, click HERE. 

To learn how to transcribe photos you have taken yourself, click HERE. 

Do you have specific questions? Click HERE to create a ticket, these will go to our Free Ticket desk

BG+ users with questions, please click the Orange Help Button and Contact Us to fill out your priority ticket.