It was only a few days into 2013 when news emereged that BillionGraves had been sold to Otter Creek Holdings, which is a working strategic partner with American Granite and Memorials, Inc. and American Monument (Utah). Otter Creek Holdings and their affiliate, American Monument, understands the connection people have to families’ headstones – they work with them every day. So BillionGraves could not have asked for a better home!
Despite this change, you can be assured that the BillionGraves you’ve come to know and love hasn’t changed. And in their Press Release they issued the following statement:
We guarantee that …
BillionGraves will ALWAYS be a free service. Our primary goal is and will always be to make records found in cemeteries readily available to people everywhere. We will ensure this by leaving both our website AND mobile app free of charge. For our avid users, we offer extended services including extra record watches, access to all BillionGraves records on your mobile device, and virtual walkthroughs of any cemetery on your device and more are offered through our BillionGraves Plus Account. This is available for only $9.99 per year and coming soon, users will be able to earn the same features by uploading or transcribing enough records (see below).
The BillionGraves team is always seeking to improve the site. We have an excellent team (see About Us page) that is constantly trying to make our site run smoother, be more user friendly, and adjust with the constant growth. With the new owners, this vision will not change. We are still passionate about our goal and we are always focused on reaching it. If you have any feedback for us on what you do or don’t like or any features you think should be added, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d love to hear your input!
This new change is an opportunity for growth. We are especially excited for this change in ownership because it means that BillionGraves will only continue to grow (see below). We are still focused on building the largest headstone database and we won’t stop at one billion graves either!
We still can’t do it without YOU! You are our top priority and we are so grateful for the millions of contributions you make. Thank you for your continuing efforts! Spread the word to your family and friends, too! The more the merrier at BillionGraves!
And BillionGraves is expanding!
Here are some great things you can look forward to:
We are improving our partnership with FamilySearch. Our developers are improving automated methods of connecting BillionGraves records to those at FamilySearch. Very soon, users will have the ability to look up a person on FamilySearch and see the BillionGraves records attached to that person. This will include the reverse as well: users will be able to link BillionGraves records to people found in FamilySearch.
More incentive programs are coming soon! So start warming up your smart phones and transcribing fingers! Pretty soon you can earn free things (in the past we’ve given away iPads, T-shirts, BillionGraves Plus Account features and more) with the amount of pictures you take or transcribe.
BillionGraves is forming connections with My Legacy Memorial. BillionGraves is proud to be a part of a company who is involved in other genealogy projects such as My Legacy Memorial—a company that puts QR codes on headstones that are linked to a tribute page online about that individual’s life. This turns that headstone into a living memorial where family, friends, historians, or visitors can learn more about them by merely scanning that QR code with their smartphone. Coming soon, the records found on My Legacy Memorial will connect to those at BillionGraves, providing more complete and meaningful records.
More useful services for BillionGraves are on their way! In an effort to make BillionGraves bigger and better, we are making the services we offer on our website and app more useful. For instance, developers are currently making it possible to create family connections and relationships between records already on BillionGraves. Keep an eye out for more upcoming improvements in our system!Thank you for your loyalty and enthusiasm at this exciting time of growth and expansion!
So when you’re on your next cemetery crawl, or just on a day trip visiting a reli’s grave, take some photos, and help everyone worldwide, by uploading them to BillionGraves.