In the last 7 years, over 500 community groups we have surveyed one quarter of all Irish historic graveyards, a rich heritage resource that can create global links between communities.




Visit the Historic Graves official website


Keywords:  Genealogy    Graveyards    Digital technology    Tourism    Crowdsourcing 


Preservation, Use and re-use

Rural, Intangible

Link to database

Short description of the good practice:

The Historic Graves project is a community focused grassroots heritage project. Local community groups are trained in low-cost high-tech field survey of historic graveyards and recording of their own oral histories. They build a multi-media online record of the historic graves in their own areas and unite to form a national resource. The project outlines a system and sequence which helps to co-ordinate and standardise an historic graveyard survey. The online platform allows visitors from Ireland and across the globe to freely explore and search the growing database of multimedia records and stories. Local communities can self publish historic graveyard surveys and transcribe the graves inscriptions. So far, the project has worked with over 500 community groups, registered more than 800 graveyards and transcribed over 80.000 individual graves. The transcription work has been carried out by volunteers across the globe in a truly participative co-creative framework. The platform allows Irish people from all over the world to trace their ancestors through the graves epitaphs, locate the memorial using exact coordinates and see the conservation condition via high-definition images. The project is now an important driver of cultural and genealogical tourism to Ireland, as the Irish Dispora has spread out accros several continents and many Irish descentants keep strong links with, and have deep feelings for, their motherland. Additionally, the initiative helped increase awareness about historic graveyards as a huge cultural heritage asset to be preserved