Searching By Maiden Name

Did you know that you can search for someone on Find a Grave® using a maiden name? 

To search by maiden name, click on “More search options” next to the Search button then check the box next to “Maiden name” and enter the maiden name in the Last Name field.

With the maiden name option checked, you can also include both the maiden and married names in the last name field and the search will find memorials that include both names.


  1. Any chance to add an additional last name field for Americanized or non-Americanized names? For example, in Lithuanian language the americanize last name could be significantly different from what it was in the old country. I have been putting the Lithuanian name in the maiden name field so both can be searched, but that causes an issue for females for which I actually have a maiden name.

    • I encountered this recently when I was transcribing a marker. The names on the marker were spelled differently than the names in the obituary. I handled this by entering the last name as “Johnson (Jonsin)” or whatever. The search worked when searching for either spelling.

  2. I always try to find a maiden name, because my thinking is that they were someone before the marriage, so that name should be remembered.

  3. Another help when searching for a female might be a way to indicate multiple married names, with the ability to search by another married name than the one she had when she died.

    • Thanks for your suggestion. You can add multiple last names in the last name field and each of them will be searchable independently or in combinations. You could add the details about the source of the names (marriages, etc) in the bio, but for search-ability, you’d want to include the name in the last name field.

  4. Love getting this newsletter. Great idea for us who want to learn more!

  5. I was made to change my grandmother’s memorial by FAG from two names in the last name field to only one name in the field. Now I read that I can have both names in the last name field??

    • Yes. The old search didn’t handle multiple last names well, but one of the benefits of the new search is that works well with partial names and multiple names.

      • Is FaG saying you can add two last names to the MEMORIAL itself? I understand what you are saying about the search accommodating two last names, but I don’t think that is the question being asked by this user. I believe this user is asking about the last name field in the MEMORIAL itself. Please advise.

      • Yes. If someone has or used multiple last names, you can put them all in the last name field. They will display on the memorial and be searchable individually or together with the new search.

  6. I have been wanting to enter a bio or an obituary into family, but I do not know how to do that. Can you help me please?

    • Thanks for your question. Can you tell us a little more about what you are trying to do? If you’d just like to create a memorial for someone, you can do that by clicking the “Add a Memorial” button on the homepage.

      • I have tried to put the obituary in and I have been told that they will not put people who are alive, that doesn’t make sense sense it’s a publication

  7. Is there a way to make search including “Maiden Name” my default setting? I recall that searches once worked that way.

  8. I love this Question & answer section on the Newsletter.. I also finmfg Find – a Grave muchquicker to download a memorial..Great Job people. Thanks.

  9. It would be great if you could add paste an obituary for a memorial in the app. Now you have to be on the full website to do that.

    • Thank you for sharing this info I did not know I could do this.

  10. FindaGrave THANK YOU for all that you do. I believe this is one of the best uses of WWW.

    Also, a great big THANK YOU to all of the volunteer photographers.

  11. Why don’t the day, month, and year appear of these Comment and Reply postings appear on this forum, but the time of day does? It’s very strange. It is important to know. Please fix it. Thank you.

    • Good point. We’ll see what we can do about that.
      (Update: We’ve added the date information to comments. Thanks for pointing that out.)

  12. Why isn’t there an Armenian flag 🇦🇲 under the lFlowers” tab? There are millions of Armenians all over the world.

    • Thanks for your suggestion. We’ll pass it along to the design team. In the meantime, you can add an Armenian flag using the custom flower option. You can learn more about doing that by clicking the “Help” link at the bottom of pages on the main site and searching the help files for “custom flower”

  13. Thanks for starting this newsletter. I like it. I really like that people can ask questions and get answers. Thank You.

  14. I suggest you consider individualizing Bios or addendum Bios by subsequent writers with: Date of submission, Date of any revision, ID of the writer, relation of writer to the memorial person, and a paragraph on their sources of information, e.g. censuses, “family name” Bible Records, cemetery records, other FAGMs by their IDs, books by ID, Social Security Death Index, personal knowledge, etc.

    After all, these memorials could last long after the writers are gone.

  15. The best part about this newsletter is that Findagrave is actually interacting with folks and listening to their input. Thanks for what you are doing!

  16. Any way you could get search results to show variations in spellings for last names if they are close? For example: if you are searching for “Rose” maybe it could show “Rosa” as a last name if the date and location match. This could maybe help match individuals whose researcher entered the name incorrectly. This is a common problem especially for lesser known branches of families or where the reporting person pulled information from a source in error like census records which are notorious for spelling errors and/or bad handwriting.

    Thank you for the newsletter. Great idea!

    • Yes, in our Memorial Search click on “more search options” and then check the box for “similar name spellings.” Then the search you perform will search for similar name spellings.

      • I just tried this suggestion of checking the box for “Similar name spellings” and entered “Rosa” for the first name (the actual name is “Rose”) and entered the actual married name of “Imhof” and my sister’s memorial (Rose Imhof) did NOT show in the results. Will you run the same experiment please?

  17. Is there anyway that you could notify a contributor when one of their memorials have been merged with someone else’s or removed? I feel all of us would like to know why a memorial has suddenly been removed from our care and told why. It seems only a courtesy. Thank you so much for your wonderful work. Wow! I love this new newsletter! Thanks again.

    • Thank you for this suggestion. This has been passed on to our development team. We’re glad you like the newsletter! Thanks for all your work on the site.

    • I agree I had a memorial removed for no apparent reason and I would love to know why. Didn’t know if it was requested by a relative or if fag did it.

  18. Why cant I add Bio Information to a Memorial? Bio Information in a memorial created by another contributor?
    Message: Use the ‘Suggest other corrections’ button below to suggest changes to the bio.

    I have suggested Other Corrections to add an obituary, an obituary is not a correction it is a bio and does not get approved.

      • Why cant I add Bio Information to a Memorial? Bio Information in a memorial created by another contributor?
        Message: Use the ‘Suggest other corrections’ button below to suggest changes to the bio.

  19. Is there a way that a monument can be included that has only one date such as a double with a spouse that is still living?

    • Sorry, we aren’t sure we understand the question completely. If you can tell us a little more about what you have in mind, we’ll see if we can help.

  20. I also love FindAGrave…
    1. How about being able to add something to the cemeteries themselves? I cannot add the GPS coordinates, or when a cemetery was opened, additional pictures…., if I was not the one initiating the cemetery. That would be so helpful,
    2. Allow cemetery names of the times they pertain to. In Europe nationality of a place changed a lot. i.e. cemeteries in what is now France or Poland were once German, and had ONLY German burials, and the cemeteries might be right next to the new cemeteries in those locations. Please allow relevant historic location names, (or at least search by GPS, add GPS if you insist on google maps locations… )
    3. Also, it is hard to add cemeteries overseas. One should NOT anglicize these, i.e. not Munic, Bavaria, Germany but rather allow München, Deutschland, …. afterall it is an international site, not just for Americans. Having to pick from a preset list of locations, is nearly useless for overseas cemeteries.
    Thank you.

    • Thanks for your suggestions. 1- You should be able to add photos to a cemetery. If those photos include GPS coordinates they will be added for the cemetery. We have plans to make it easier to suggest other edits to a cemetery, but for now you can send those to us at or visit the “Cemetery Corrections” message board in the forums to share your suggestions, 2- You can use the map on the cemeteries page to search for cemeteries by location. If you type a location name and then select it from the suggestions that come up, the map will update to that location with the cemeteries near by marked with pins. We do use current names for locations so that folks can find them using modern maps, etc, but we can add historical information in the description of the cemetery if it’s helpful. 3- This is a trickier one, but something that we are working toward. Thanks again for your suggestions.

  21. Another added accolade for the many who link family members after the memorial is established is give credit to the submitter in their bio. or profile.

  22. Love the initiation of the newsletter. And this comment space!

    Concerning searches, instead of allowing multiple spellings, the ability to use “wildcards” would cover much of that and more. I wonder if these are already build into FAG’s search engine. The two most commonly used wildcards are:

    An asterisk (*) may be used to specify any number of characters. It is typically used at the end of a root word, when it is referred to as “truncation.” This is great when you want to search for variable endings of a root word.
    For example: searching for educat* would tell the database to look for all possible endings to that root. Results will include educate, educated, education, educational or educator. E.g., “mccull*” would find all kinds of endings – mcculloch, mccullough, mccullum, mccull, etc.

    A question mark (?) may be used to represent a single character, anywhere in the word. It is most useful when there are variable spellings for a word, and you want to search for all variants at once.
    For example, searching for colo?r would return both color and colour. E.g., “anders?n” would find Anderson and Andersen.

  23. I have discovered that you can check the drop-down for Prefix/Suffix, choose ‘Mrs’ and then modify it. Are there any other shortcuts within the Prefix/Suffix menu?

    • That prefix option is an interesting little fellow these days. We recently made the field an open text field to accommodate all the different types of prefixes people want to use, but we left some suggested or common prefixes in a drop down for folks who want to use those. You can type whatever you like in that field or you can choose something from the dropdown.

  24. How about adding a suffix for “Esq.” for attorneys. You have the “Dr.” prefix for doctors, so you should have the proper SUFFIX for attorneys. Thanks!

    • Today we really just use the suffix field to designate folks with the same name as their parents (jr, III, etc). We’re still thinking about the possibility of expanding it, so we appreciate your input as we think about it.

  25. Love the Newsletter! The comment/reply section is a great learning tool for me. Thank you and keep it coming!

  26. Love your newsletter! I have already benefitted from the maiden name tip. I do have a wish list item. On the Cemetery Search, it would be helpful to be able to refine the search when no data is returned. Today, we have to re-enter data.

  27. I love having the newsletter – thanks!! I recently expanded my account to Worldwide. I’ve noticed that I don’t get any FAG hints for overseas (Germany) even though I do get hints for deaths with burial dates. Of course the country’s data is very nice, I’m used to being able to “see” the FAG site link, with pics of graves and most of the time links to other family buried in the family plot. Are there not links for worldwide burials?

    • Are you looking at the Find a Grave database on the Ancestry side? Those data and hints are generated by Ancestry, so we aren’t sure just how they work, but we can ask about it.

      • It must be an Ancestry error. I don’t get any FAG hints for worldwide graves in Germany, like I do for USA.

  28. My grandfather had 6 siblings. My grandfather and 5 of those siblings are attached to their parents. The 6th sibling has a memorial in which her maiden name is spelled wrong and she is not attached to her parents. I sent corrections through the system to the memorial manager and they were declined. I tried to message this manager and was ignored. So my grandaunt’s memorial is wrong and is not attached to her parents. Is there anything that I can do about this?

  29. Find a Grave is one of my favorite research sites. This newsletter is fantastic! Thanks.

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