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Recently there has been a spate of questions each regarding a single person, attempting to locate where that person is buried.

There are also some instances of this type of question that are older.

Would it be helpful to create a canonical question for "How can I find where [famous/accomplished person] is buried?" This could have a community wiki answer that can be used to link "duplicate" questions to.

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  • Question: Would the genealogy site already have something like this, or would such a "canonical question" be a better question for them?
    – T.E.D. Mod
    Sep 8, 2022 at 21:51
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    Also, the Genghis Khan question is to my mind a quite different question, as the subject was a very famous historical figure, his death nearly a millennia ago, and the question was motivated by persistent myths about the riches of his "tomb". One could also argue that it shouldn't count because it is (sadly) closed as off-topic.
    – T.E.D. Mod
    Sep 8, 2022 at 21:56
  • Given, H:SE is apparently currently writing some substantial bits&pieces for the research section of an upcoming dissertation (?), I fail to notice any substantial improvement visible in either guiding, nudging or inspiring an otherwise pretty persistent user towards better quality questions, starting with our constant clamouring for 'do your own research first, then show it here'. The announcement was to now expect a dozen or so Qs more like that. Can we in any way get an improvement out of it until this run is finished? This type (lowQs kept low) vs that type (topic) might need addressing? Sep 26, 2022 at 13:12
  • @LаngLаngС I don't have the context to understand your comment about the upcoming dissertation. Can you point me to the announcement you mention?
    – shoover
    Sep 26, 2022 at 15:54
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    This comment thread history.stackexchange.com/q/69837/26786 currently announces 10–15 Qs of 'that kind' to still expect. Whether it is really a 'diss', idk, maybe too pointy, but it is a kind of specialised and not really small project for sure. And that 'project' seems to 'progress', thx to our work, but 'we' fail to make progress on the expected Qquality front? Sep 26, 2022 at 18:08
  • It's not the first time that I contemplate a pattern (seen coming on down from staff for a certain troll —not that I'd insinuate this user was a real troll; but the staff actions are what's inspiring): would this be one case (I do know at least another on this site) for an unrequested/forced user profile merger? Sep 27, 2022 at 18:25
  • I don't see this user as a troll; more like a help vampire who is new to SE and not familiar with its purpose and norms.
    – shoover
    Sep 27, 2022 at 18:26
  • Maybe. I explicitly excluded this user from being 'troll'. But I do feel a certain shortcoming in my A to this. Especially, if we also might see a rule evasion: circumventing Q-ban for LowQ? (Plus the tracking issue we try to keep up with here) Sep 27, 2022 at 18:36
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    @T.E.D. Apologies for not addressing this sooner but I was ill at the time this was posted and didn't see it until now. Celebrity Genealogy is off-topic on Genealogy.SE. genealogy.stackexchange.com/help/on-topic
    – Jan Murphy
    Nov 12, 2022 at 2:47

2 Answers 2

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The motivation seems to be to avoid single answers to single questions by linking new questions about 'where is the grave of X?' to 'how to find a person's burial place?'?

These are in my opinion different questions ('specific data point' vs 'methodology/howto'. Thus not really 'duplicates'?

This idea seems also motivated due to recent "spate of questions" that had answers ranging between 'easy/quick to find' to 'difficult to find ' and even 'impossible to know'. Well, if an answer was posted…

I see only the 'too easy'/'too basic' questions as problematic. A specific close reason for that already exists. A link to a 'method'-dupe may only be useful for these?

It seems further noteworthy that 'the spate' seems to have been originating from one specific new user. As long as that user keeps the cadence of this type of question at this rather low level (not multiple questions of this type per day!), and the formal question quality raised by nudging the user a bit more towards our quality goals, the problem seems to be more 'boredom of regular —but uninterested— users'? That is 'the problem' could also be phrased 'not enough interesting new questions posted'? A far more widespread and problematic trend…

Note that if there are different problems than 'on-topic but (somehow) disliked questions', then different tactics/solutions should be sought to deal with a possibly problematic specific user, rather than preventing answers to a type of question others have asked (sparingly), and which we allowed without a hinch, and should allow without much second thoughts, especially for 'famous persons'?

Although we might consider marking and discussing the possible overlap with Genealogy on the general topic: "Even more tag cleanup: burials and cemeteries"

A wiki post on 'how to find a burial place' will probably start with banal/trivial internet search way points and strategies, but then mushroom into varied details. I doubt that the 'difficult' question posters for this type will get much satisfaction out of finding such a supposed 'dupe'?

I suppose closing the 'too basic' questions as is, and having a meta-post about methodology linked to in comments might be a better and more eductaional solution than using 'duplicates' to prevent specific answers?

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If you want a canonical question on where a given Famous Person is buried, the researcher should first be aware that a marker in a cemetery is not proof that a person is buried there. These are two separate questions that are often conflated for convenience or through ignorance. Another problem that stumps rookie reasearchers is that people can die far from home and their bodies might be transported long distances for burial.

The infamous site Find a Grave was created by a hobbyist who was interested in finding celebrity burials (see Wikipedia for its history). Unfortunately celebrity genealogy is off-topic on Genealogy.SE, so the questions about where famous people are buried are not a good fit for us.

You could try writing a methodology article to stave off "do my homework" questions which may not be of general interest for the site. The advantage would be that you'd have a place to direct new users so they could get some help.

The disadvantage is that death and burial customs differ depending on time and place, and there's only so far you can go without feeling you are reproducing the FamilySearch Research Wiki, the RootsWeb Wiki, or other standard reference sites. Furthermore, the type of general article I might write for Genealogy.SE on finding someone's burial might not be a good fit for History.SE, because the community is not exactly the same. There are far more resources available for someone who is searching for the burial of a famous person than an 'everyday' person like most people's ancestors.

There are a couple of Q/As at Genealogy.SE that might be of interest to community members looking for primary source material:

You can see our attempts to transmogrify "too broad" questions into something that might be useful general or canonical answers.

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