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Idaho Falls Idaho FamilySearch Library/Preserve Our Heritage/Documents

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Learn How to Scan & Store Documents

Use a Document Scanner to Scan All Pages to a Single File

Ideally you will want to store multiple page documents in a single file. You don't want to upload multiple pages from the same letter or history as <document name>-Page 1, <document name>-Page 2, etc. Having all the pages together into one document keeps the pages together, prevents pages from being "lost", and allows for easier reading for the person reading it.

Our library has a document scanner that will scan a stack of paper documents to a single PDF (Portable Document Format) file that can be easily uploaded to FamilySearch. We can show you how to use this scanner. The scanner requires a USB Flash Drive to be plugged in to save the file onto. Be sure to bring one with you.

My Documents Are Very Fragile. How Do I Scan Them?

There are times when the documents are on very old thin paper, or have tears or other defects that will not allow for using the document scanner. The best approach to getting them scanned is to use a flatbed scanner. This will create multiple images that you will want to reassemble into a single document. See how to do this below.

My PDF Files is Too Large. How Can I Make It Smaller?

Occasionally, your PDF files may exceed the 15mb file size and can not be uploaded to FamilySearch. There are a variety of utilities to help you compress or shrink that file to a smaller size. A couple of them are listed below:

1) PDF


3) If you are an Apple Mac user, then the app called Preview will compress your file for you. We can show you how to do this.

My Document Scans Are All Separate Pages. How Do I Put Them All Together Into One File?

There are basically two ways to do this as noted below:

1) Use an expensive program similar to Adobe Acrobat which allows you to pull the separate images into a single file and then save it as a single PDF file. If you are a Mac user, there is an app called "Preview" that allows you to do this for free. If you need help with this, don't hesitate to talk with us.

2) Use a word processing program like Microsoft Word, LibreOffice Writer, etc. For more specific instructions on how to create these documents, CLICK HERE. For an example of how this might look after creating the document, CLICK HERE.

Select an Activity Below

Create Stories

Scan Photos, Slides, Negatives

Digitize Audio Recordings

Digitize Video Tapes

Scan & Store Documents

Organize Your Files

Backup Your Files

Share Your Files

Don't Forget to Bring a USB Flash Drive With You!