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[Re: The “?” in the title: Although it comes as a surprise to many people, this information and advice is not even remotely shocking if you are an archivist. Just sayin. ] Contrary to popular belief, archivists do not keep everything. Whaaat? An archivist? Throwing things out? Yep. I spent more time learning the art […]

Oh, my. I love that phrase so much I built a whole goshdarn series around it. The Talismanic Aura of Authenticity – The Series This is Part 1 in a series exploring why certain objects have a kind of power over us. It’s is the kind of power that transforms an ordinary object into a […]

Lisa Louise Cooke and I had an interesting chat about how to preserve newspaper clippings. You get to listen in our conversation because we recorded it for Lisa’s Genealogy Gems podcast. Yay! Episode 83 is ready and waiting for you. Below are my notes from that talk. Before we begin our examination of old clippings, […]

In an earlier post about how to organize photos, I talked about respecting age. The older the photograph, the harder you should try to find another home for it if you don’t want to keep it yourself. Part of the reason why you should respect age is because age goes hand in hand with scarcity. […]

. I realize that my advice about tossing photos (“lose the dreck!”) can make some folks nervous. If you are one of those people, I want to reassure you that I do not suggest anyone toss out ancestor photos willy-nilly. No way. Respect Age (when you toss photo clutter) “Respect Age” – means just that. […]

Scrapbooking is a very popular hobby here in the United States. Surely you’ve seen stunning examples in your own family or group of friends. And who wouldn’t appreciate a personalized scrapbook made for them by someone they love? What a beautiful, thoughtful gift!   . But there’s a dark side to this — and it […]

Our favorite photographs are valuable beyond measure. Many folks name a photo or album of photos as the possession they would grab first if they ever had to flee. Just last month, I heard a story about a woman who escaped her burning office tower on September 11th…only to rush back inside to retrieve the […]

Sometimes? You have to carry your anger around with you for a looong time before you have a chance to write it down. I’ve literally been holding onto an empty egg carton because the icky marketing tactics reminded me so much of the way archival photo boxes are sold. It’s an important lesson for anyone […]

Post-It notes are only temporary. Is it safe to put then on photographs?

. Alexander Stille is one of my favorite writers. Here is a link to the first essay of his that I ever read. I discovered it while I was in grad school over a decade ago, and I never forgot it. It’s free to read, and I hope you enjoy it. Free Online Essay: Are […]