[APG Public List] Advice on organization

Michael Hait michael.hait at hotmail.com
Wed Oct 21 13:05:42 MDT 2009

This is the kind of "worst-case scenario" I could find myself falling in love with.  If only my family had even a fraction of this material...  Never mind a client's.

Michael Hait

Author, The Family History Research Toolkit
Instructor, "African-American Genealogy", GenClass
African-American Genealogy Examiner


From: denise at macrep.com
To: apgpubliclist at apgen.org
Date: Wed, 21 Oct 2009 13:30:19 -0400
Subject: [APG Public List] Advice on organization

Hello All,
This is my first time posting to this list, so please bear with me.  I recently agreed to help a woman organize her collection of family memorabilia.  It turns out that she has about 5 banker boxes of mostly letters between many family members; interspersed with written works, certificates (mostly from educational institutions I believe),  diaries, etc.  Many family members have been involved in important organizations and events.  She didn’t even show me the room with the photos yet!  She has 4 4-drawer file cabinets that she is hoping to have everything organized in.  She does have a fairly outdated but working PC, with dial-up internet connection, and I believe I have talked her into downloading the free version of Legacy so that we can start inputting information in as we go along,  She has also done quite a bit of research over the years, but doesn’t have it organized.  Being in the process of starting a genealogy business offering this type of service, I feel this is a perfect worse-case scenario, and am hoping to gain some good experience in what kind of collections like these are out there.  Does anyone have any advice?  I’m thinking that the letters should be tackled first, and have them , perhaps, in chronological order?  Or should the be organized by family member?   I think the majority of the letters are between her parents.  This woman is in her mid 80’s by the way, and she comes from a family of “keepers” as she calls it.
Thanks in advance for any input on my adventure!
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