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Last month, we shared tips for getting started on your genealogy journey. We hope you’re enjoying discovering lots of great information about your family’s history! This month, we’ll talk about how to organize, store, and showcase that information.
Establish a Genealogy Binder
As you talk with relatives, be sure to jot down notes about the conversation. We’ve mentioned before that forms can be found online to capture basic information. You may want to create a binder specifically for this purpose. It’s helpful to store blank sheets of paper, printed information forms, and pockets for newspaper/magazine clippings in this binder. Why not embellish with your scrapbook supplies to personalize your information system!
Create a Photo File
If you’re planning on printing photos as you receive them, create a filing system to quickly organize. A fast way to do this – trim cardstock to 4 inches x 6 inches, embellish with patterned paper, then attach a punched shape above the upper edge. Use this space to record family name, date, or location – whatever makes the most sense for your organizing style. A label on the back of each photo is helpful also!
Use Digital Tools
The internet will be a great resource in your research, but the vast amounts of information can quickly become overwhelming. Consider using an online service such as Evernote to organize websites. Always remember to back up data and photos! External hard drives, flash drives, and discs will ensure that your hard work won’t be lost to a computer crash. Storing information digitally will also allow you to share more easily – this can be useful if you’re communicating with many out-of-town relatives.
Showcase your History
Decide how you’ll show off all your great history! Designer Susan Weinroth created a fun Family Tree layout using Fiskars tools to highlight her immediate family. A scrapbook of multiple family tree layouts would be a great way to show off generations!
You can highlight places as well as people in your history. I created this layout to honor my small “hometown” in Oklahoma. Details and photos about the places that your family has lived add rich color to your family story.
Keep these tips in mind as you continue your genealogy journey and enjoy the process!