Monday, November 25, 2013

Building Bridges: Handling collected information

     When one begins to do Family History and genealogical research it becomes evident very quickly that this particular endeavor can become overwhelming in connection with the amount of artifacts resulting from each search conducted.

     To get a picture of the situation is very easy as one considers all the papers and documents surrounding one's own life today, now multiply that by each ancestor and it is mind boggling to even think of all that there is in one person's life worth keeping and recording.

     As the saying goes, every project one takes up begins with that first step and if one has begun, it is a good idea to have a plan to stay organized as much as possible right from the start. Of course, as one also knows this is easier said than actually doing as life tends to get in the way of the best intentions.

     There are many organizational systems out there but which one will fit your particular situation?

     As a younger individual just beginning perhaps 'simple' is the word to keep in mind. A few file folders and a file holder do not cost very much, there are even some boxes that are the perfect size for hanging folders, either way, color coding and alphabetical and numberical order is most likely the easiest to use.

     The main colors are: Blue for the Paternal Grandfather, Green for the Paternal Grandmother, Red for the Materal Grandfather and Yellow for the Maternal Grandmother. On a fan chart it looks like this:

     Color folders are available but one could easily just color the tabs on regular file folders if funds are an issue. Keeping the colors like this helps with keeping family lines organized in a multiplicity of ways. Following this on through down to the folders will help greatly as more and more families are added to your color chart remembering to have a folder for each family.

     Following this same system on your computer will help you keep your genealogical digital files organized also by creating a folder for each family and keeping all items either scanned or downloaded connected to that family within their family folder.

     Whether you are just starting or have been doing research for years, it is a good idea to either begin or stop and start some sort of system before it is beyond impossible. FamilySearch has a very good short video on organization that may be of help also here.

     Lastly don't be discouraged if you've been collecting and researching for a length of time and it is already out of control. The best thing is to start and slowly add what you already have done, eventually you will be organized!

     Next: Ways to share family/genealogical research

Building Bridges for All Generations!

Claire (*)
Timeless Genealogies
We're Your Family is "No. 1"


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