How to Store, File and Digitize Your Memorabilia



How to store all of your research into your family tree so that all of your work is preserved for future generations.

Filing GENERAL - Start out the right way and you won't end up in a big mess!

60 Years of Photo's where to begin! (Coming)
If you are like me and started researching before even the IGI was on line you have collected a lot of "trees" along the way. I started out with a good filing system but as the work load grew I became a bit lax and my filing system left a lot to be desired. I hope to share my experience with old and new researchers alike in an effort to help preserve all our hard work in a manner that will not be too overwhelming for future generations.
I would also like to share how I dealt with the influx of photographs which I dearly loved to receive the older ones where like finding gold! But once again can be quiet overwhelming and time consuming when trying to keep everything in order, together with personal photo's. PART ONE The most effective way I found to file my family history was to keep a folder for each individual family group.  As I found the ring bound folders too large I opted for manila folders in foolscap size and kept them in a filing cabinet under each family group.  So for e.g. under SMITH I had a folder for my grandfather, great-grandfather, gg grandfather and ggg grandfather going back through the direct line.

In this folder I inserted plastic pockets to hold birth, marriage, death certificates, copies of any other pieces of interest where they had lived for e.g., copies of photographs, copies of bibles, family groups of the couples children's families and so on.  All filed in order so that anyone who picks up these folders can quite easily follow and read about these families and see how the information has been proven.
 

I marked on the front of the manila folder (foolscap size) the names of the parents, date of marriage and their children and birth/christening dates.

 

e.g.

John SMITH m Mary GREEN

25/1/1917 Glasgow, Scotland

Children

  1. John born 1918 Glasgow, Scotland

William born 1/1/119 Glasgow, Scotland

 

I secured it all together with manila folder fasteners. A bit of a disadvantage was if I needed to add more information (more pockets) but I still loved this method and could easily look through these folders for any information quite quickly. I would advise covering the folder with clear plastic and looking for fasteners that do not rust.