Preserving Your Family History Records Digitially – Great “How To” Guide at FamilySearch Wiki

Hi Everyone,

I also came across this piece of information from an October 21, 2010 post at Dick Eastman’s Online Genealogy Newsletter at

Preserving our hard work we have done in our genealogy research can be daunting.  Dick Eastman notes that a wonderful guide exists that was created by Gary T Wright in October 2010 that can help us with all the myriad questions we have on just how to accomplish this miracle to preserve our research in digital format.

The document is in PDF format and is available from the FamilySearch Wiki site at:

Once at the site from the above link, click on the link that guides you to the PDF formatted file for this wonderful document.

Key high-level topics included in the “white paper” for preserving your research that are mentioned are:

  • Why digital Records?
  • Digital Record Requirements
  • What Is Digital Preservation?
  • Digital Preservation Challenges
  • Archival Storage Media Challenges and Solutions
  • Addressing the Challenge of Obsolete Storage Technologies
  • File Format Challenges and Solutions
  • Addressing the Challenge of Obsolete File Formats
  • Getting Started with Digital Preservation
  • Adding Descriptive Information to Records
  • Copyright Considerations
  • Archiving Records
  • Sharing Your Digital Records
  • As Time Goes by …
  • Introducing a Personal Archiving Internet Service
  • Putting It All together
  • Final Thoughts
  • References

The paper is 15 pages in length and does look to appear to be very well thought out and put together.

It would be a shame that all of our hard work in researching could disappear once we are gone.  Take some steps now to see that this does not happen.  Invest some time in informing yourself about what you would need to do to preserve your material digitally.

I think this paper is one of those that you will want to print out a copy or bookmark the site for future use should the notion of preserving your material is not yet on the top of your list.  When the urge strikes, you will know where to look for how to accomplish saving research you worked so hard to create.

I am so glad I noticed this at Dick Eastman’s site.

Check it out.

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

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