ancestryink fisherman

Friday, September 7, 2012

Your Gravestone Has an App

That is the headline for a Yahoo! News article touting the use of a QR scan code for gravestones.

Scanning App for the Deceased - image from the news article

My daughter Annie shared this article with me while we were chatting this morning on IM.  (She's well-trained about the graveyard stuff. I'm very proud.)

Technology hits graveyards.  It is an interesting idea.  The article seems to be describing the app as an "instant obituary."   Using their QR reader app on your iPad or smartphone, you would receive obituary-style information about the deceased by scanning a code placed on the gravestone. 

Something in me feels a little squeamish about the idea of people traipsing through peaceful cemeteries, waving their phones or iPads over any random gravestone, and standing there immersed in the digitally rendered information - rather than enjoying their surroundings and having slightly more meditative ruminations on the dead.

Granary Burying Ground, Boston - May 2012

However, that being said, if this idea were applied to the headstones of historically renowned people, often buried within graveyards such as the Granary Burying Ground in Boston which inevitably will receive a good deal of foot traffic, it might be an opportunity for combining a wonderful history lesson, with significant information about these famous, deceased citizens. Museum tours with audio headphones, comes to mind.

Grave of "Mother Goose" - Granary Burying Ground

Read the article and see how it strikes you.  Should we be using technology in graveyards to "summon the dead?"

Graveyard photo images:  by Jane Sweetland, property of AncestryInk©


  1. I enjoy your blog. It's interesting and informative.
    Keep up the great research. B

  2. Great website, Jane,

    Also great article about "a woman in every port". So how would I find info abt when law against bigamy were enacted? I have questions about some of the men in my tree that apparently were married in overlapping stretches, England and the US, so it makes me wonder, based on what your article brought to my mind.


    Mark Clark