Have you ever run into this? A headstone that gives you the years, months, and days a person lived and the deceased’s death date but not his birth date. If your reaction is like mine, you’re saying to yourself, “ugh, now how do I figure out the birth date?”
The family of Jonas E. Greenwood did just that. I have great information on the stone if only I could access it.
Headstones can be treasures of genealogical information if only we can decipher their magical codes.
Have No Fear, The Answer is Here!
I just knew some bright person would sooner or later come up with a “simple” date calculator and put it online for me to use. And lo and behold someone has. I was just in an email conversation with a gentleman about the Jonas Greenwood headstone pictured here, and my fellow genealogist was very kind to send me a link to www.timeanddate.com.
Time and Date.com
This site as you might imagine is all about time and date. They have lots of clocks, time zone maps, weather information, and time and date calculators.
If you want to know how long a person live or the time between the death of one spouse and the death of another you can use the Date to Date Calculator. It calculates the time duration between any two given dates.
However, if you want to know a historic – or future – date as in the case above where we know Jonas Greenwood’s death date and the amount of time he lived, we can use the Date Calculator. With this you use one fixed date plus a time duration (days, months, years) and calculate missing beginning or ending point.
It is super simple to use. Just put in the information you know such as the death date and the years, months, and days the person lived and click on “calculate,” And in less than the time it takes to say “ta da,” you have your answer. Note: you may need to scroll down the page (below the “fold”) on the screen to see the answer as I did, depending on the size of your computer screen. But that’s the only caveat. You can play this game all day long with all of those tricky headstones you’ve been perplexed by. It’s fun, and it’s free.
By the way, Jonas E. Greenwood was born on March 4, 1825, lived 77 years, 4 months, and 17 days, dying on July 21, 1902. Isn’t that neat? With the calculator I can complete the story of his lifespan using his birth and death dates as bookends. Where before I had only two facts, now I have a whole story.
Dig out your headstone pictures and start calculating!