Saturday, July 22, 2017
Sorting Saturday - What To Do With All That Paperwork?
Yes, that's my honest-to-goodness "needs to organized" pile of research that needs to be tackled. Now, you are probably wondering why someone who does this for a living would allow it to get so out of control. And the answer is simple.
When I get going with a case, I lose all interest in getting the papers filed away neatly! Most of these are simply forms that I use when I am doing the research. The originals are all digitized. I find this makes it so much easier to handle. Then the original documents (birth,death, marriage, or other purchased records) are put into archival sleeves, and placed in binders under the individuals name,
Here's what the final files look like:
I usually go through my paperwork about once a month and digitize any originals. I then make sure that they, and their information, got properly placed into my genealogy program before sliding the document into an archival sleeve and placing into the archival notebooks. This process has been known to take 3 days when I've had a particularly good month! But usually takes but a few hours any more.
These large six-inch notebooks completely fill one of my 6-foot tall bookcases. But they are readily available should I need to see them for clarification at any time. As are the digitized versions on the computer. When we have family reunions, I usually bring a few notebooks, and then set up a slide show on my laptop of just photographs. Everyone loves that! You'll see large groups of people gathered around the display table just watching the slide show! Or groups going through the notebooks,. And you know they're enjoying all of it because of the "oohs" and "ahhs", and the "I remember that!" comments heard.
The forms that have piled up? Once they are put into proper perspective in my genealogy program, and digitized, I then discard them. I still have the digitized versions, and can easily print one out if I need to for clarification.
What do you do with all of the paperwork that tends to build up with your research? Do you keep all of it? Or just the documents you've had to pay for? Or if you digitize, do you keep any of it? Let us know! We'd love to hear what you do with it all!