If you’ve transcribed any images yesterday or today, you’ve probably noticed the new feature on our transcription page!
You can use this exciting new feature whenever you come across a headstone with some sort of military information on it. We made this feature as easy as possible for the transcriber in an effort to make the process as simple and seamless. Here’s how it works:
1. When you come across a military headstone, transcribe all the regular information as usual. After you’ve entered in the name, birth and death dates, etc., click on the “+ add military specific info” link.
2. Type in all military-related information EXACTLY HOW IT’S WRITTEN on the headstone. Do not lengthen any abbreviations or abbreviate any words. We have obtained a list of common titles and their abbreviations from the VA and have designed an auto-populate system that will take care of all the categorizing for you! (Read on to see how it works)
3. Click on the “+ Faith Emblem” link and choose which emblem is on the headstone. You can usually find these emblems at the top of the headstone, but sometimes they are found elsewhere as well (i.e. in between the birth and death dates).
5. Our site will work behind the scenes to auto populate the military fields found on the headstone that you will see on the individual record page. That being said, there are hundreds of thousands of abbreviations out there, some that are not even on the VA’s extensive list of official abbreviations. If you see an abbreviation that does not register with our system (i.e. this record) feel free to contact us and we would love to add it so our system will recognize it and publish it on the page.
Note: Even if the abbreviation doesn’t register with the form on the record page, it will still be saved with that particular image.
So go try out our new transcription tool and let us know what you think! If you have any suggestions on how to make this feature better, comment below or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We would love to hear your feedback!
Congratulations! We had a monumental month at BillionGraves, and it’s all thanks to you. At BillionGraves, we’re all about bigger and better goals. Even our name is an audacious goal: One Billion Graves. Some people think it’s an impossible number, but there are truly a billion headstones out there, waiting to be documented and mapped.
Our Million in May goal was one of those bigger and better goals we like to set. During May 2012, our database received hundreds of thousands of new records. We had 2,825 new users sign up with BillionGraves. Over 500 users uploaded their first picture this month. Because of all this new participation, our database will be sure to grow more quickly moving forward. We saw new cemeteries being photographed all over the world, and we added 662 new cemeteries to the database. Previously, the month with the highest number of new records was April 2012. May was 3 times more successful than that! We did in one month what we did in our first 7 months last year. Our average daily upload has increased by 300%. Wow! The amount of growth has been huge, and again, we thank all of our volunteers for your hard work!
What’s Next? BillionGraves: In a State of Growth
We love the energy and enthusiasm you BillionGravers have shown, so let’s all keep going through June! June is going to be all about the progress of states, provinces, and countries around the world. The Leaderboard will show which US state, Canadian province, or country is producing the most new data! You’ll be able to see how well your state, province, or country is doing, and you’ll also be able to check on the progress of the states, provinces, and countries you want to research! We’re excited about the growth we’ve already experienced, and we are confident that June will be another epic month.
Congratulations to those who made the Leaderboard in May! Check out the results below. If you’re a winner, we will be contacting you via email soon to get you your prizes!
We’re halfway through the month! Right now, we have over 100,000 images that need to be transcribed. Because many headstones have multiple individuals’ records on them, those 100,000 images could translate to 150,000 or 200,000 new records for our database. Transcribing these records will bring us so much closer to our goal!
Thanks for all the transcriptions you’ve done so far. For all you super-transcribers, check out our transcribing shortcuts to help you get through even more records faster.
Many people are interested in completing transcriptions for the photos they upload—did you know you can do that? Here’s how:
From your dashboard on BillionGraves.com, click on Images Uploaded. Click on one of the albums containing your photos (these are usually grouped by date). Then click on a photo you want to transcribe. Clicking next at the top of the page will take you to the next image in that album, so you can easily continue to transcribe all of the photos in your album. For a more detailed description, read our blog post on the subject.
What if a headstone was transcribed incorrectly? That’s OK. You can edit transcriptions and make improvements to them. From any headstone’s Record View, there is a blue button that says Edit on the right next to the name on the record. If you click Edit, you can make any changes you’d like to the record.
We are so grateful for everyone’s volunteer efforts here at BillionGraves. Keep up the good work! Just under two weeks left to reach our goal of 1,000,000 new records!
With a day devoted to honoring mothers coming up here in the US, we thought we’d honor some here at BillionGraves. Our database of headstones is a great resource for your personal family history research, but did you know it also provides other interesting data that we can tap into? We did a bit of our own research and found the top 100 epitaphs transcribed in our database. These beautiful epitaphs show devotion to fathers, mothers, brothers, daughters, war heroes, and other loved ones.
As we looked specifically for epitaphs honoring mothers, we found that in the top 100 epitaphs, “Mother” is included in 28 of the entries. Then, we found that the word “Mother” is contained in 16% of all epitaphs in our database. Mothers are revered members of society, and it shows in the headstones you’ve collected for BillionGraves.
Check out this table of the most popular epitaphs about moms:
The number of records flowing into the database this month has been monumental! We are so appreciative of the efforts our volunteers are putting in. Participation this month has grown dramatically—in registrations, image uploads, and transcriptions. Your efforts have provided a giant boost to the BillionGraves database. Thank you!
Because there has been so much participation, we’ve decided that rewarding just the top 25 on the Leaderboard is not enough. Now, if you’re among the TOP 50 picture-takers or transcribers at the end of the month, you’ll earn some great prizes!
If you find yourself on the May Leaderboard as of May 31 at 11:59 PM GMT (7:59 PM EDT) as EITHER a transcriber or photographer, you will receive the following appreciation gifts:
Top 10 picture-takers and transcribers
BG+ account free for one year
$10 Subway gift card
BG+ account free for one year
Choose a BG+ account free for one year OR a BillionGraves t-shirt
Choose 10 Record Watches OR a BillionGraves t-shirt
And finally, spots 41-50
Thanks again for your contributions, and we hope you’re excited about the new prizes! Although, you may have to fight harder to retain your spot on the Leaderboard this month!
TERMS AND CONDITIONS
Promotion is open to all to participate for free. Registration is required.
Awards will ship within 30 days at the end of the promotion.
Recipients may be required to provide a mailing address for physical items.
T-Shirt winners will be required to provide their requested size.
If a winner is on the Leaderboard for both categories (i.e. a leader in picture-taking and transcribing), the winner will be awarded the prize corresponding to the highest ranking on either board. For example, if a user is ranked #35 on the picture-taking Leaderboard and #19 on the transcription Leaderboard, he or she will be awarded the prize for spots 11-20, or a BG+ account for one year and a BillionGraves t-shirt.