Saturday, October 1, 2011

Organizing My Genealogy Files

I joined the study group organized by Valerie of Family Cherished. and Tonia of Tonia's Roots .  They are wonderful in encouragement and offering ideas.
The first order of the day was to read chapter 7 in A Researcher's Guide to American Genealogy, set goals for organizing and write a blog about it.
I have been working on my assignment, just had not blogged about it.  The group is a gregarious group and I have learned much from them.
My secret...I am a closet perfectionist.  I love organization, and I constantly purchase file folders, bins, file cabinets, and binders to do my organization in. I watch the blogs and twitter for new ideas.  Unfortunately, I find myself with stacks of organizational material to be utilized or "organized".
Therefore, my First goal must, of necessity, be to pick a method,Second it to USE IT, Third is to begin with one family.
I had heard of using OneNote as a organizational method reading Elyse's blog about it. I knew I had the software, and had used it for my FamilySearch mission to keep things in order.
With a little encouragement from Valerie, I set up my Genealogy Notebook on OneNote.

This is what my paper file looked like...
My pictures, which I will not fill you with the visual horror of the stacks in boxes, file folders, tubs, etc., are being organized by scan into folders on my external hard drive.

I am the guilty person who has a stack of 'backs of envelopes', scratch pads, multiple notes for different people on the same notebook page.
I am now sorting out the physical file folders one family at a time and am scanning information and adding it to the OneNote folders, and I love the feature of being able to 'print to the folder'  It saves when working on line, Copying and pasting or printing, scanning and sending  to folder.  I can print it out later for the hard copy file.
This is my hope for a better genealogy life, and I plan to stick to it this time instead of giving up because it is not happening perfectly.