Share your Records :: Genealogy
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Share your Records

Journal by bcagle

I have been very lucky with my genealogy research because I have 'inherited' many boxes full of photos and documents. The problem is preservation. With literally thousands of documents, photos, old newspapers,family letters, and notes, it soon became impractacle for me to adequately store and preserve the wealth of papers.

But, I found a solution that not only preservs all these papers and photos, but allows others access to them as well.

I have begun scanning everything to my computer. Each box of papers is organized and scanned then stored on CDs. When I have a file box full of papers that have been scanned, I take it to my local library or Family History center (by prior agreement). These facilities are able to preserve precious papers so that the can be made available to researchers many years from now. My local genealogical center was thrilled to be offered such papers and call every few weeks to know if any more are ready.

The agreement is that they are donated as a permanent loan and that any researcher or family member is to be allowed access in perpetuity.
My records are safe from disaster and time.

The added bonus is that I don't have to have room to store (4) file cabinets full of genealogy info or worry about it getting tossed if something happens to me.

Hope this helps someone.

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by bcagle Profile | Research | Contact | Subscribe | Block this user
on 2006-06-16 08:23:40

Climb Your Tree to Uncover Your Roots. Find helpful resources, conduct a search, enter the forums, or just hang out and read interesting historic accounts and watch vintage videos. Resources and info at and my photo gallery at has what you want. Get my article feed to stay up to date.

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by carolburns on 2006-06-18 13:44:43

That is exactly how I store my papers and photos etc. Scan, then store on hard drive (external) and disc. Unfortunately for me I do not have as many papers etc as yourself but I have copies of everyone in our family at the moment as well as ones I have obtained myself through the records offices. The originals are kept in files under lock and key. Anyone wanting to look at them have to look at the copies.

I have been thinking about placing copies of them onto another disc to give to the regional offices where the families were born and died for future reference by other researchers but am unsure how to approach them. I was even thinking about putting the family tree onto disc and giving them a copy of that as well. Would that be worthwhile do you think?


by bcagle on 2006-06-19 07:18:01

I think it is a wonderful Idea. You might also approach some of the online sources, or post to your own website, as I am doing.
Usually a phone call to the manager/director of a library or genealogy association will get you information on whether or not they would be interested. If you prefer not to let go of the originals, I don't see why they would not be happy to have copies,(cheaper for them as they don't have storage costs). I would offer a couple of copies of the CD so they have a backup. Also, I would suggest you label each scan with your name,contact info,as well as what it is. This can be accomplished in the preferences of most programs that handle images.
Good luck and keep us posted.

by jkozerski on 2006-09-13 02:42:17

I've also done the same

by janewinston on 2006-10-10 17:44:55

What a great idea it is taking the files to the library; I never would have thought of that. Also, I'd like to share that I have found this to be a good resource:

I started using their service because I was looking for living family members whom I have never met (I come from a very big family -- my father is one of 12 kids). they have the option of buying a 24 hour membership to their site, so i was able to look-up several people w/o extra cost. since i had the membership, i took the opportunity to review their death records as well. a few more spaces on my family tree have been filled.

by kerbent on 2007-10-17 19:41:50

by bcagle on 2007-10-18 07:05:53

You are wonderful. Oh that I will ever get to the point of having everything labeled properly with all associated documents cross referenced. You offer some wonderful tips for us all. It is a vital part of genealogical research, I think, to freely share what we find. I too have supplied cds with info and photos to whom ever asks.
I began my genealogy site several years ago and it is a never ending process. There are times that it slows and times I find a burst of time an am able to refine, replenish and add.

I think the main thing for us all to remember is that the information we gather is unique to our histories and worthy of preservation. I urge everyone to find what works best for them and not to be afraid to share copies. You never know what may result.

Copies of many of my documents may be found on my website,

Thank you for sharing your methods with us, Sandra.

by IPSSPAR on 2008-03-31 15:47:13

Been reading comments on how to save documents for researchers in the future and I have to say you all have wonderful Ideas.

Thank you all for the great information and sharing..

by robinson13 on 2009-04-19 13:39:48

I have just read the comments posted here and agree with everything said. But i would also like to add that old newspaper cuttings of obituaries hold a mine of information and should be kept safely, the names of the chief mourners,usually family members but also the area,s they travelled from. Also i would advise any one who actually visits a cemetery to photograph any family headstones found, due to the fact that in england in alot of places if a headstone is found to be unsafe they are now tagged with a yellow or green labels and if no family member comes forward after one year to make the headstone safe they are where possible pushed flat or removed if too badly damaged.This makes tracing the actually grave harder or impossible due to the headstone being removed.At the rate that headstones are being removed the only evidence of the headstones will be photographic evidence

by Myname on 2009-07-21 09:42:09

I am also in the process of scanning all photos (not just the old ones) of family members and storing them online. Not only is this a great way of preserving old photos, but in case of disaster, your photos and documents are safe. This came to light recently when a town in BC was devastated by forest fires. People who were evacuated were rushing around trying to take photo albums with them. Not something you keep by the front door!

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