Take a moment and think back about the years you have spent working on genealogy research. Chances are, what came to mind are a mixture of genealogy successes and failures. Even mistakes can be valuable when a person is learning a new skill. Did you come up with any genealogy regrets?
What is a genealogy regret? It is similar to a regular regret, but it is focused on something related to genealogy. It is about that situation that comes to mind, causes you to wince, and to wish that things had turned out differently than they did. Here are a few of the most common genealogy regrets.
Not digitizing your records.
Genealogists know that vital records, research notes, and family photos are incredibly valuable. This is especially true when there is only one copy of something. Many genealogists honestly intend to sit down and digitize all their records…someday.
In the meantime, those records, notes, and photos are at risk of being lost forever. A fire, flood, hurricane, or tornado could destroy your home – and all the genealogy papers along with it. Schedule yourself some time to scanning and digitizing all of your research, documents, and photos. You won’t regret it!
Not writing down or recording family stories.
Those stories, that you’ve been told a million times by certain family members, are an important part of your family history. Many people assume that the story teller will always be there, so there’s no need to record the story he or she tells at every family gathering. Sadly, no one lives forever.
Write down the family stories that you have heard so many times that you know them by heart. Make some audio recordings of relatives telling those treasured stories at the next family get together. Preserve those precious family stories so they can be passed down to future generations. It would be a shame to lose them.
Not attending a genealogy conference.
RootsTech is the biggest genealogy and family history conference in the United States. It is held once a year. Those that attend the conference have the opportunity to listen to talks from well known people in the genealogy field. Conferences are also an excellent time to meet up with friends from far away who love genealogy as much as you do.
Conferences can be cost prohibitive for some. Some of the information from the RootsTech will be released online for those who could not attend. The thing that people tend to regret about not going to a conference is the missed chance to spend time “in real life” with those they have met and become friends with online. If a bunch of your friends are planning on attending the next RootsTech, you might regret it if you choose not to go.
Image by Brandon Grasley on Flickr.
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