How to start preserving your family history

How to start preserving your family history

Our family narrative tells the stories of who we are. When we look back on memories from birthday parties, graduations, weddings and other special moments, we are provided with a greater sense of self.

Digging out the boxes of your family "archives" can leave you feeling unsure where to start. Here are a few tips to help you find enjoyment as you look back on — or learn more about — the memories that make your family who you are. 

Digitize favorite memories

Look for moments that symbolize important parts of your family history. If photos and videos don’t hold a special memory, it’s okay to let them go. Once you have them sorted, you can use a service like Legacy Box to create digital copies, or do it yourself using apps like Google PhotoScan. It’s a good idea to save them in two locations. By saving one of the copies on a shared service like Google Photos or a family blog or website, you can also share the link with other family members.

Preserve stories that aren’t recorded yet

An older adult visits with a younger friend
Learn more about your history by connecting with older adults in your family. You may discover new stories in your family's narrative.

Are there favorite stories your family likes to share that haven’t been recorded yet? Spend some time with family members and have them recount significant memories. To have stories complied into a book, consider using a service like StoryWorth.

Enjoy your family narrative 

As you start to dig into your family’s photos and archives, you might feel overwhelmed by the sheer size of the task. Instead, enjoy the process. There are many ways to make it easy to look back on these memories, whether that be a printed album, an online site or an app you view on your phone.

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