Ok, that title is totally false. There are more than 3 steps to organization. For every researcher there is a way different way of organizing information. The method you use choose for organization is not as important as having a method and being consistent with it.I would encourage you to do some research and find the method that works best for you.
Genealogy has come a long way since people were hand writing charts and family trees. Paper is still important (I think), but digital files are used primarily for most researchers. That being said, it’s important to keep paper and digital files organized. To increase the usefulness of your organization the two systems should be complimentary. Frequently, I’ve become so excited about a “find” that I didn’t slow down enough to keep everything organized. If finds are organized and filed properly (as well as citing sources) it’s much easier to determine what information you have and don’t have an how it connects or doesn’t connect with other members of your family.
A single document can shine a light on multiple family members simultaneously . For instance, a birth certificate will have the name and birth place of the child and names and (perhaps occupations) of the parents. Census records will record entire families and neighborhoods.
After, finding the WW II enlistment records for one of my ancestors, I realized that I haven’t scanned all of the military records that I’ve secured. It’s a good idea to update information for the individual ancestor, for example branch of military, dates of service, medals, etc. And if possible scan the source records and attachment to whichever database you might be using for your family research.
In the next several months, I need to make sure my files are organized, up to date (with the information that I have) and that all (most) of the source records are scanned attached to the individual(s) that they are connected too.
Tomorrow, I’ll talk about pictures (please make a note of who is in the picture, when and where it was taken) and metadata.
Anna Mae’s Oldest Grand-baby
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