Start Collecting & Organizing Your Family Photo Collections

This should become a "family affair".

Time to get those old photo albums out! Many of those photos may have mold growing on them, or the colors may be changing, or there is no name associated with the photo. Don't let those people become "nameless faces".

Begin by identifying the people you know in the photos. Those that you don't know? Time to begin asking other family members for help!

Photos can also give clues about when the photo was taken, by the clothing styles worn, and such. Did you know that little boys were often dressed in dresses around the 1900s? How can you tell a boy or girl apart? Boys had their hair parted on the side and the girls down the middle. Fun Fact.

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Don't forget your own immediate family photos. Where are they located? Do you have them all digitized and safety backed up? Are they labeled? Can you find them easily?

The big concern that many folks have talked about in the media is that the current generation of youth and young adults are storing their photos on Facebook, Instagram, and other social media sites. They are not stored in full quality, and will be vulnerable to being lost when accounts close, etc. When this happens, their heritage will have been lost.

Review with your family how they might better protect and ensure that their photos, scrapbooks, etc are safely stored for generations.

Here are two handouts to review if you like to help you:
#1) Organize Your Files
#2) Develop a Safe Backup Strategy

Happy Organizing!!

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Create Stories in Family Tree About Yourself and Ancestors

Stories are a great way for your posterity to get to know you.

They say that a picture is worth a "thousand words". How much better though is a great photo that has a fun short story attached to it?

Start collecting stories from your parents & grandparents. Edit the stories into individual brief "memories". Put them into Family Tree so they can be easily shared and remembered always. Unless preserved, those fun stories will be forgotten.

A "Memory" is NOT a long history or story! Think of a memory as a "soundbyte" (storybyte?) for others to be able to quickly read. You can create a memory in just a few minutes.

AND…don't forget to create and share your own memories with your posterity. There is no one better to write them than YOU.

I try to create a "photo/story" once a week about something that happened in my life, and then SHARE that memory or story with my children & grandchildren right from Family Tree. These "memories" will be what my posterity remember me by.

View a couple of examples to the right that I wrote and shared to my posterity.

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Watch This Cute Video on Protecting Your Photos!

"Keep Me! Protect Me! Share Me! And I Will Live Forever!"

Family photographs connect us with our ancestors and family members. They "will live forever in our memories" if we keep them safe, protected, and share them with other living family.

Interview Grandparents or Other Family Members

Learn more about their ife.

Our grandparents and parents will have so many life stories to pass on to us that help us to understand them better and to "connect" with them. Their memories are lost if they are not written down or recorded. We need to preserve their heritage by gathering those stories and uploading them to FamilySearch.

Using the FamilySearch "Memories" app on our smartphones, we can easily write a short story (or memory), record an audio recording of them telling a brief story, add a photo, etc. Of course you can also use the FamilySearch Gallery webpage to add these things as well.

Remember the "memories" are not long histories. They are a brief story of an event that happened in their life, or a 3-5" audio recording of a life story. What is really fun once these memories are in FamilySearch, is to SHARE the memory with family members through Facebook, emails, or messages using the webpage link. The individuals receiving the link can view the story without even logging into FamilySearch.

Audio recordings of our ancestors as they tell stories of their lives can be inspiring. These recordings become a part of them, and add to their legacy.

Can you imagine listening to a Danish great grandmother singing a primary song with her Danish accent?

We can help you digitize your cassette tape audio recordings so they can easily be played back on your computer. What a wonderful way of saving a digital file of your ancestor's stories in a shareable digital format! You can even load digital recordings up to 15 megabytes in size to Family Tree to share with others. With some simple editing you can break down a long interview into smaller "soundbytes" of individual stories.

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