Tuesday, 16 June 2015

The Headstones Have Arrived AND Do You Digitally Edit Documents?

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Last summer I wrote about ordering 3 markers for Man's family, one for his great-grandmother, Charlotte and one for his great-grandfather, Carl (husband and wife, but, not buried side by side, not even buried in the same county).  Also ordered was a companion stone for his grandparents, the Stevens.  All three markers were delivered by November 2014, but, we had no opportunity to visit and photograph the new markers at that time.  This spring (almost summer) we are visiting where possible. We are happy to report that we have managed to obtain photos of Charlotte and Carl's stones.

You can read the previous posts here: The Lazy Hazy Days of Summer, Perfect for Remembering and Headstones and here:  Sounds Easy - - Until - - Ordering Memorial Markers

Carl is buried mid state in Clare, Clare County, Michigan.  I could see no time frame that we would be able to visit there, and even though I had requested a photo on the web site, Find A Grave, months ago, the request had not been fulfilled.  I had a "brain storm" of sorts and turned to social media, posting on Facebook that if anyone would be traveling through mid Michigan and had it in their hearts to stop and take a photo, I would be so thankful.  Within minutes, and I mean minutes, FB friend Pam Warren (who is a Genealogy Blogger, at Granny's Genealogy) wrote privately and volunteered, stating she had her hubby were driving through Clare that very weekend.  Talk about a sense of timing on my part.  I had no idea.  What a true delight.  I had quite a bit of information, including a scanned copy of the lay out of the cemetery and where Carl's burial spot was, so, I forwarded that information to her right away.  I was able to include the image of what the stone was supposed to look like.  And, true to her promise in just a few days I had this lovely image of Carl's marker.  She has granted me permission to use the photo, thank you Pam, for being a good friend, and the photo.


Charlotte is buried about a hour or so from our stick built home, so one day when we were going to be about half way there doing errands, we went to the cemetery (prior to errands, but, of course) and visited her grave site and the new marker.  We visited other family markers while there.  We checked on Man's parent's stone which had "tilted" a bit, he had requested the cemetery level the marker.  He was very pleased to see it was indeed, leveled.  To say we were delighted with the new marker on Charlotte's grave is an understatement.  What a sense of closure I felt.  I had wanted these graves marked for years and now they were.


I maintain the memorials for both Carl and Charlotte, they can be found here, Carl and Charlotte.

We will personally visit the grave sites of the Stevens' in the coming weeks, with camera in hand. I am very excited about seeing the stone.


Elsewhere in my genie life:

I have been down the genie research shiny hole. Many years of Commonwealth of Virginia marriages , divorces , deaths and some birth information have been added to Ancestry dot com.   Truth is, I have not even looked at the birth information, but, one of my research buddies/angels says there is a lot of delayed info there. At some time I will visit that data base.  The marriage and death data bases have images of the actual certificates. (Note:  Recent years do NOT have certificate images online, only the indexed information is available, some images were not released due to regulations covering recent events and privacy.)  I have roots so deep in Virginia I frequently say, "you cannot dig me out".  I have been having a wonderful time digging around in the data bases.

So, the question arises, do you digitally edit documents that you find online??  Here is an example of one from the death data base, frankly, it is well digitized, clear and quite easy to read.


In it's original downloaded size it is 1.21 MB of data.  I link documents to my data base, building a "life story" via documents and photos, when I can obtain them.  I love building the life stories this way.  However, I don't care to have that large a document linked, that is a lot of storage.

So, I digitally edit and reduce the storage size.  Trim off the black sides, enhance.  And, look what I found when I did, a white box in the middle of the document:


Social security numbers have been edited out of the documents/data base.  I won't comment further on the whys and wherefores.  I just thought it was interesting what happened when I edited the downloaded document.

Have you ever edited a document to find a surprise hidden?

Happy researching, I am going back to the shiny hole of Virginia records.  Yee ha!




* The required disclaimer, I have not been asked by Ancestry.com to review or even to use their pay web site.  I pay my fees, I use, I take my chances.  I have a more full and detailed disclaimer page on my own blog, Reflections From the Fence, you can find the disclaimers, here.

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