Okay, I’ve made my decision. I was dogsitting again this weekend, so I have some extra money. This extra money is going to be the start of my genealogy organization fund.
I’m going to have two sections of organization. My mother’s side and my father’s side. Then I’m going to split each section into my 4 great grandparents. So on my father’s side, that would be Moore, Thorward, Redford, and Parkin. On my mother’s side it would be Mays, Moyer, Taylor, and Applegate.
For now I’m going to stick with my Walmart Hanging Folder crates. My hope is that once I’m actually organized, they’ll be more efficient for me.
I’ve ordered my supplies from Office Depot and now I wait for them to get here. Then it’s time to work! These hanging folders come with five of each color and I’m using one color for each of the eight surnames. My current setup has two hanging folders (Moore and Mays) and all the documents are in acid-free sheet protectors. Everything else is just hanging around in no particular order. Everytime I need to find something I have to pour through everything.
My plan is to use one hanging folder for each type of document. I’ll have a red folder for all Moore birth certificates, a red folder for all Moore death certificates and so on. As I get more types of records, I’ll probably have to get more folders of a specific color. OfficeDepot.com does sell the individual colors, so hopefully that won’t be a problem. Really I’ll just have to roll with that as it comes at me.
While I wait for my order to come in, I plan to start organizing. Here’s how I’m going to go about this:
- My first step will be to separate all photos from documents. So I’ll have all the photos in one spot and documents in another. I thought I had already done this, but I’m not 100% positive. So this will either be very time consuming, or very easy.
- The second step will be sorting Moore documents from Mays documents. Again, I have two folders of documents already separated but I need to go through the mess of the crates and put everything in one pile.
- The most time consuming third step will be to separate the Moore documents into four piles (Moore, Thorward, Redford, Parkin). This is the most time consuming because the Moore side of my family is the side where the treasure trove of boxes came from. So I have ALOT of stuff that I haven’t been through yet. In fact, I don’t even have all my stuff, some is still in New York. I might have to take extra time in July after the reunion to locate all my stuff at my Aunt’s house but for now, it’s in the best place. When it comes back, it’ll be coming back with a system in place.
- The last thing I want to have done before I start color coding is separating the Mays documents into their four piles (Mays, Moyer, Taylor, Applegate). This one isn’t going to be as hard because most of my Mays documents are already in acid-free page protectors. Most of my documents are in digital form from Ancestry.com (Kentucky Death Records) or FamilySearch (Ohio Death Records).
This should be enough to keep me busy for awhile right?! Baby steps folks! Doing this huge task in stages is what is going to be my saving grace! To read Part 1 of Organizing my Chaos: click here.