Sunday, February 03, 2008

Danish Tombstone Projects

Are you researching for your Danish Ancestors Tombstones? This post will be of interest to you. Free access to pictures of various tombstones located throughout Denmark.

My great grandparents immigrated to the US in the 1800's. I confess that I have been very intimidated regarding the genealogical research on the Danish side of my family but I am beginning to research in Denmark and have found several websites that I have found to be of great use and would share them with you. The most recently discovered resource for those researching their Danish Roots across the pond titled "DK-Gravsten" meaning Danish Tombstones. The site is similar to several sites like Tombstone Inscriptions, Cemetery Records Online, and Find-A-Grave where volunteers have come together to preserve the heritage found in the various cemeteries across the world. DK Gravsten is the work of numerous volunteers in Denmark along with the website creators Joan Bedsted and Torben B. Sørensen photographing, and uploading the information in the the database of DK Gravsten. This site is in the early beginning, but already they have several cemeteries available for researching.

The information is provided in a transcribed format providing you with whatever information is inscribed on the tombstones. A digital picture is also generally available for viewing for each transcription. I have been conversing with Joan Bedsted one of the website creators regarding this site and we have had enjoyable conversations despite the language barrier. She has explained to me that she has approximately 469 cemeteries listed on the website that have been photographed are available for searching. Denmark has 3000 cemeteries so they are well on their way in providing a wonderful resource for those of us researching our Danish Roots. The website began on the Internet on November 14, 2007 and they have had over 43,000 visitors in the short time that it has been up. They have also created a page containing information regarding Danes who have died in other countries who immigrated from Denmark and encourage the public to contribute to this database if they have pictures of tombstones of their deceased Danish ancestors. In order to contribute to the "Deceased Danes abroad" you do not need to photograph the entire cemetery; just supply them with pictures of your deceased Danish Ancestors tombstones and they will be placed on their website for others to search. I browsed some of the names and found several from Nebraska where many Danes settled in the 1800's.

Access to this wonderful resource is totally free. You can contact the website author and they will provide you a copy of the picture of the tombstone for your records for free. Joan is a friendly and very kind person that wants to help gather families together.

In order to navigate the website successfully, I would provide you with a few hints.

First: You can view the first page in English by clicking on the English link on the left side bar. This will give you an overview of the website.

Second: To browse through the Deceased Danes Abroad click on "Danske i Udlandet." The page that loads allows you to browse the cemeteries according to ancestors name, providing you an alphabetic link table on the left of the page.

Third: A map showing which areas of Denmark have been photographed, click on Danmarkskortet.

Fourth: Lastly, you can view the cemeteries geographical by clicking on Jylland (Including Hjørring, Ålborg, Thisted, Viborg,Randers, Århus,Skanderborg, Ringkøbing, Ribe, Vejle, Haderslev, Tønder, Åbenrå, and Sønderborg), Øerne (Including Fyn [Odense, Svendborg], and Sjælland [Holbæk, Sorø, Frederiksborg, Roskilde, København, København, (City, Amager), Præstø, and Maribo], and Bornholm.) Once you have selected the geographical area, you need only to click on the index and you will be able to view the cemeteries that are available to search. The cemeteries that are listed in blue are those that are searchable.

If you would like to view or contribute information at the DK-Gravsten website, click DK-Gravsten. Have fun!

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