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What to Do to Preserve Those Old Books & Documents?

As you have worked on your family history there has surely been located numerous documents, books, family trees, directories, etc, relating either to your family lineage, hometown, business, schooling or house. There can even be collections of city directories kept by an ancestor, school yearbooks, football programs, business records, governmental forms, deeds, professional organizations, civic and charitable organizations, military records, the list is endless.

You may have already gone through any of these books and documents to retrieve information relating to an ancestor, but now you think you do not want to store this ‘mountain’ of documents or books forever. What to do?

First they should be preserved in some method for future generations. Think of all the priceless documents that have been saved through the years that you can see now. To scan such a ‘mountain’ can be a very time consuming activity. If you are willing, do make the effort to scan the papers and pages of the books. The question still arises, what to do with the original even after you scanned them?

Always a good suggestion is to see if the local hometown museum, historical society or genealogical society is interested in the items. It doesn’t have to be just the town, there are also county, regional and state societies interested in historical and genealogical material. Never just toss the items.

If you do not have the time or knowledge to scan the items, the Mocavo search engine for genealogical research is providing free of charge a scanning service until Dec. 31, 2012. Go to their site and they provide the details. Now they can not scan everything type of item. Some of the items not being accepted are newspapers, photographs and damaged documents.

What Mocavo will do is professional scan all the pages of books, records, paper documents, then being in a digital format these records will also be available for other researchers to view the information from original sources. Each provider of the documents will be credited as the donor and will also be able to download the entire digital material sent to Mocavo for their own safekeeping. You also have the choice of having the books and documents returned to you after scanning or having Mocavo keep them.

So take some time, review what you have that needs to be scanned into digital form and either check with hometown museums and societies or check out the free service offered by Mocavo. Share what has been hidden away.

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