How to become a Parish Keeper and guidelines from the forum at - March 26, 2008

Louisiana Cemetery Preservation LACemeteries profile on Find A Grave - looking to friend Parish Keepers in Louisiana.

This post entitled 'Re: Duties of Kounty Keepers?' on 'Find A Grave Forums'!

Duties of the Parish Keepers on Find A Grave.

The actual post is below

Q: What is a County Keeper?
A: It is a program concieved of and administered by Admin Russ Dodge as a way to tap into the kindness of volunteers who have intimate local knowledge of the cemeteries in their area. It is not an "Official" Find A Grave program, so a "county keeper" doesnt have the authority to speak for the Administration.

Q: What does a County Keeper do?
A: A County Keeper takes a special interest in scrutizing the all cemetery listings for their county on Find A Grave, and provides Russ with all the information they have in fixing up all the listings, leaving the county as clean and accurate as possible. This is done by sending e-mails to a special e-mail adresss, which is provided in private.

Q: What constitutes a "Clean County"?
A: Optimally, a County Cemetery Listings should all have:

1. Full and correct names of the cemetery - ie. "Johnson Family Cemetery", not "Johnson Fam. Cem.", and "Old Johnson Pioneer Cemetery", not "Old Pioneer (Johnson)". The words "Cemetery, Burial Ground, Churchyard, Memorial Park" etc should be part of every cemetery listing, otherwise it is considered incomplete.
2. City/towns listed for the cemetery (so people know exactly where it is). If it isnt the confines of a town, the closest municipal entity.
3). Address information as much as is available for a particular cemetery. This can be simply the road its on to full addresses with contact phone numbers etc.
4). No duplicate cemetery listings. Listings as such should be merged together.
5). AKAs if a cemetery is known either officially or coloquially by alternate names. This also includes frequent misspellings of a cemetery, ie, "Lake Wood Cemetery", even though the cemetery's name is "Lakewood". All cemetery listings can have up to two AKAs.

Thats the basics for a clean County.

Q: How do I volunteer to become a County Keeper?
A: Send a Private Message to Russ via the Forums, or to his e-mail address - [Email][/Email] Be sure to state that you have read through and understand what he is looking for in a County Keeper.

Q: How long does it usually take to get approved as a County Keeper?
A: As soon as Russ reads your request and responds. If for some reason you did not get a response, send the message again. The Admin's get lots of e-mail and PMs, and sometimes things can get lost in the shuffle. There will be a response either way.

Q: How many counties can I "keep"?
A: You are only a County Keeper for One County at a time. Once that county is cleaned up entirely to satisfaction, you can take on another county, if you so desire. The One County Rule at a time is very important. In the past Keepers were allowed tangents, and unfortunately that can't allow that anymore. If you have any fixes that are not in the county you are presently working on (or are not in a county you have cleaned up already), post it in the proper Thread in the Help Forums. Russ will not do any non-County fixes via County Keepers. There is just too much sent to him for him to tangent.

Q: Is there other things we can add as a County Keeper to cemetery listing?
A: Of course! Nice extras are welcomed and encouraged. These include -
1) GPS coordinates
2) Cemetery Bio
3) Directions to Cemetery.
4) Cemetery gate shots.

If a cemetery listing doesnt have these, we can get along without them, but they are nice to have.

Q: What is a County ID Number?
A: All counties in the Find A Grave database have a ID number assigned to them. The Admins can use that number to get to a Utilities page for that particular county and make bulk fixes. When you become a County Keeper, you will be provide you with that number, and all County Keeper e-mails should be headed with it, such as "Smith County 5352".

Q: I have found duplicate interments listed in the cemeteries in my county. As a County Keeper, do I send them to you too?
A: Interment listings are not to be handled via County Keepers. Dupes, errors and such WITHIN a cemetery listing should be also posted in the proper Forum Threads. County Keeping is for the cemetery listings themselves, not interment listings.

Q: Will you add new cemetery listings if we send the info to you via County Keepers?
A: No. This is something that will not be done via any County Keeper e-mail. Anyone can add a cemetery via the Beta Form. It requires an interment to add one, so the standard practice is adding a "John Doe" listing. After you have added the cemetery, dont forget to delete the John Doe. Russ will be happy to fix up and add more information to any new cemetey one might add, but he am not adding them himself. This is because adding cemeteries on our end is fairly labor intensive, and consumes more time.

Q: What is the difference between a Keeper emailing you the info and someone posting it on the thread "cemetery fixings"?
A: Anything sent as a County Keeper will be dealt with directly, and you will get feedback from Russ directly. Generally, your specific County fixes will be done in a more tiemly manner via the County Keeper program, because Russ works in it regularly. The Fix This threads tend to be done in bulk after stretches of inactivity, due to all the things the Admins are continually working on.

Q: Does it matter from which email address we send the County Keeper fixes?
A: Nope. You can send any fixes via any e-mail address you want, as long as it has your County name and County ID number in the Header.

Q: Is it preferrable that a County Keeper send several fixes in one email or a seperate email for each fix?
A: Either way is just fine. A County Keeper is volunteering their time and efforts, so whatever way they feel confortable sending is acceptable. However, if one has a very long laundry list of fixes to send at once, it would probably be better to break them up a little into a couple e-mails.

Q: Should the fix requests to be formatted in a particular fashion, for consistency?
A: Consistency certainly would help greatly, but again, send it however one is comfortable. Just try to make whatever fixes you send as clear and direct as possible.

Q: If a County Keeper sends a correction in an e-mail, and right after hitting the send button they discover that it is wrong, how do they let you know of the mistake?
A: Probably the best way is to send another e-mail immediately with capital letters indicating "READ FIRST". That can ensure that that particular e-mail will be read before the others.

Q: Do you want us to wait until we have the entire county sorted out before sending you the email or should we send in one cemetery at a time?
A: Nope. Send any fixes you desire at any time. You dont have to wait for having all the info for the entire county. As the database is constantly growing and evolving, it is entirely okay to send fixes peicemeal.

Q: Okay, how do I know that a County is "Clean" by Russ?
A: One lets Russ know that all the listings in their county is clean and accurate. After he checks through and has no questions, he can declare it "Cleaned Up", and you can take on another county.

Q: What happens with the cleaned up county after I have finished with it?
A: You are the Keeper of the county until you choose not to be. As such, it all you have to do after it is cleaned up is check the listings from time to time, and alert me of any changes that have been done, and what needs to be fixed because of them. We can work together to keep it continually clean.

Q: Would it be possible to get/post a current list of County Keepers?
A: A list is something that wouldnt be released to others, simply because some might want to be private about it. However, one can contact Russ to see if a county in question has a County Keeper. He can contact them and see how they feel about being contacted by others.

Q: How should a cemetery with only one interment (confirmed or disputed burial) be listed on Find A Grave?
A: A place with only one burial in it is not technically a "cemetery", so it should not be listed as such. Lone graves usually are listed on Find A Grave as "John Smith Gravesite". It being in dispute etc, should be noted in the Bio of the person, if thats the circumstances.

Q: How should a memorial (no burial) in a park be listed?
A: Depends upon where it is located. If "Memorial to Fallen Soldiers" is in "Veterans Park", then "Veterans Park" should be the "cemetery" listing, since thats a discernable larger entity. If it is a momument in front of a courthouse, "County Courthpouse Grounds" is appropriate for the "cemetery". Some monuments are stand-alone entities, not in in a larger entity. They can be listed as itself being the "cemetery".

Q: What characters (hyphens, apostrophes, etc.) should not be used in cemetery names on Find A Grave?
A: Hyphens and apostrophies are the only acceptable characters allowed for contributors to use in a cemetery name. Quotation marks, backlashes etc are not. A cemetery should be listed as "Smith-Jones Cemetery", not as "Smith/Jones Cemetery". The desire to have standardization of cemetery listings is behind this policy.

Q:Is there a way to "lock" cemeteries so no new memorials can be added? If so, it would be useful for places where only one person is buried, etc.
A: Unfortunately, there is no way to lock out a cemetery from having interments added to it. The Find A Grave utilities and softwear has no capacity for that

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