How to keep your family history organised: a 4-week plan - week three

ab3dda59-c538-4ea5-9465-61d0e53eeac3

17 July 2018
|
Mabie_Todd_SWAN_1060_Nib_Close-up-93445.jpg How to keep your family history organised: a 4-week plan - week three
Find out how to organise the paper files in your family tree research with Denise May Levenick's top genealogy tips.

Find out how to organise the paper files in your family tree research with Denise May Levenick's top genealogy tips.

Start with paper files to clear the physical distractions and help you feel as though you’re making real progress.

Work with one family at a time, to gather materials and assemble in folders or binders. Choose to sort and label papers by surname, family group, location, or source. Use whatever seems best suited to your research.

Be aware that using individual names can quickly lead to file-overload and more folders than information inside.

Next, conquer the digital chaos

At some point, you’ll want to organise your digital files. I like to work with one family’s paperwork and then organise the same family’s digital files. This helps me eliminate duplicates and spot gaps for ideas for future research.

Help yourself be more efficient by setting up a simple intuitive computer filing system that mirrors your current paper filing system: if you file paper documents by surname, likewise set up your computer folders by surname.

Advertisements

Locate all genealogy-related digital files inside one genealogy folder and it will be easier to find files and manage data backups.

Quick tip: Let your computer take the strain

Follow these file naming tips to allow your computer to do most of the work when sorting and finding files:

  • Format your dates, names, and places consistently
  • Use short, meaningful file names
  • Avoid special characters such as [email protected]#£$^& etc
  • Use a simple folder structure to avoid searching many subfolders

Join us in week four as we show you how to preserve heirloom documents.

Do you love learning new family history skills? Come along to Family Tree Live in 2019 and discover a whole world of genealogy tips.

(image copyright ElooKon)