How to Find Gravesite Records Online

Free Grave Finder Resources

Betwys-Y-Coed 14th century, St Michael's Church

Ron Evans / Photodisc / Getty Images

A grave finder is an important tool when tracking down genealogical records, finding gravesites, locating interment records, or researching gravesite information. You can also use a grave locator to confirm if someone has passed away.

Much of this information can be found online since these records have been digitized for easy access. The following sites can give you a good jumping off point to find find where someone is buried for free. 

Find A Grave

Find A Grave website

What We Like

  • Search by name or location.

  • Create memorials for loved ones not buried in a cemetery.

  • Forum for family historians and genealogists to connect.

What We Don't Like

  • Information contributed by other users might not be accurate.

  • Numerous ads.

With over 180 million memorials from as far back as 1995, Find A Grave is the world's largest collection of gravesites. You can search for famous graves, find graves by location or date, and get a list of interesting monuments.

This grave finder is extremely detailed, so you can search by not only name and location but also the year the person was born or when they died. Filtering options let you find gravesites that are famous, sponsored, or not buried in a cemetery. You can also include the person's nickname, maiden name, and/or partial last name, as well as find memorials with or without a grave photo, with or without GPS, and those that have flowers..

Find A Grave can also be used to view epitaphs of interest, add burial records, and read success stories from other searchers who were able to find what they were looking for. 

Family Search: Find A Grave Index

FamilySearch Find A Grave Index

What We Like

  • Add an existing family tree or create new one.

  • Filter searches by life events or relationships.

  • Find and store research at no charge.

What We Don't Like

  • Account required to use the search feature.

  • Search results redirect to other websites.

The Find A Grave Index by the FamilySearch genealogy website offers quite an expansive family history database of records and images from cemeteries around the world.

This initial search gives you cursory data and is a good starting point, but you won't find unique results since the search queries information from Find A Grave, listed above. However, if you use FamilySearch for your genealogy needs, it can be helpful for cross-referencing death records with family trees.

Interment.net

Interment.net website

What We Like

  • Information about veterans' cemeteries, cemeteries of the California missions, and cemeteries that have been flooded.

  • Search cemeteries around the world.

What We Don't Like

  • Misleading ads and links to external websites.

  • Browsing names alphabetically is time consuming.

  • Unintuitive search feature.

Interment.net offers an extensive database of cemetery and burial records from thousands of cemeteries all over the world. The site is primarily aimed towards genealogists and local historians, with an online archive of transcriptions from thousands of cemeteries across the world sourced from government bodies, churches, historical groups, and individuals.

Something unique about this grave search tool is that for most records, you can find a specific grave in the cemetery. Most records show block and lot numbers to help you navigate the cemetery.

This website isn't the easiest to navigate. To find burial records, either open the SEARCH page and do a general search, or browse the locations and then use the search bar off to the right to find a name.

The National Cemetery Administration

US Department of Veterans Affairs National Cemetery Administration

What We Like

  • Resources for national and state veterans cemeteries.

  • Interactive map on the home page.

What We Don't Like

  • Only basic information is provided.

  • No images or links to family members.

National Cemetery Administration (part of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs) lets you browse through 136 national cemeteries in 40 different states. Select a particular listing, and you'll see office and visitation hours, directions, historical information, historical figures buried there, direct contact information, and cemetery maps.

BillionGraves

BillionGraves website

What We Like

  • Huge number of records.

  • Mostly high-quality images.

What We Don't Like

  • Powered by volunteers, so mistakes might be common.

  • Browsing cemeteries requires a user account.

BillionGraves is another free gravesite finder that calls itself "the world's largest resource for searchable GPS cemetery data." As the name suggests, the goal of the website is to preserve at least one billion graves by having users take location-tagged photos of headstones from around the globe.

You can use this free grave finder to locate people and find cemeteries in several countries. Just enter their last name (and first name if you can) to start the general search, and then from there you can filter the results a number of ways, like by birth and/or death year, location, and collection (e.g., death certificate, memorial, veteran).

If you want, you can upgrade to BillionGraves Plus for neat features like notifications, nearby graves, and discounts at partner sites like MyHeritage.

Other Grave Finder Resources

In addition to sites listed above, there are other resources where you can find information about deaths, burials, interments, and funerals:

Still Not Finding What You're Looking For?

Try the following resources to keep the search going. Remember, most of the time you're not going to find all the information you're looking for in one place; this almost never happens with detailed web searches.

However, with patience and persistence, it's definitely possible to locate your objective. Small pieces of information from many searches and sources eventually add up to a lot of information. 

  • How to Find Obituaries Online: Death notices, interment records, and obituaries can usually be tracked down online with a little bit of patience. However, sometimes the web is merely a jumping-off point for research that can only be done in person at a records office.
  • How to Find Public Records Online: Many town, state, and federal offices put public records online. There are several free public records search tools you can use right now to track down the information that's available to the public. Many resources include gravesite records, death notices, and interment information.