Organize Your Records

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Sort the materials you have gathered into groups for each individual or family.

Organize and file materials in a way that is easy for you to use. Your filing system should:

  • be simple.
  • be consistent.
  • be convenient and accessible.
  • keep your records safe.
  • help you find your information quickly.

When organizing your records consider electronic and/or physical organization. This page currently has good information for physical filing, but lacks content around electronic methods for filing.

For physical filing:
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Several ways of organizing notes are described in:

William Dollarhide, Managing a Genealogical Project, Updated ed. (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1999). At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 929.1 D69m.

Many people use loose-leaf notebooks (such as 3 ring binders), or file folders to organize their materials. Put files in alphabetical order by the name of the husband. Your notebook file tabs, or file folders may include the information needed for on-going research, such as:

  • Family group records
  • Pedigree charts
  • Maps
  • Research logs for the family
  • Photocopies of source documents, interview notes, copies of e-mail and correspondence, Internet printouts.

It is usually a good idea to have a notebook tab, or file folder for each family (parents and children). Store these notebooks or files in a safe place. You may want to take them with you when researching that family.

Individuals on your pedigree are in at least two families: (1) as a child, and (2) as a parent. Log information and file documents prior to marriage with the father’s file. Log information and file documents starting with marriage in the husband’s file.

Additional Articles[edit | edit source]