What to do with a precious genealogical collection

+9 votes
180 views

It looks like one of my contacts will come into possesion a large one-name-study that was thought lost. It comprises a few thousand family group sheets. She expects to obtain full rights to publish it how she sees fit, so let's assume that's the case.

What is the best way to make this collection accessible online? My first thought was that she should upload it to the Internet Archive:

https://archive.org/details/genealogy

and then send it off to NEHGS (it's a New England family). Is there a better option than this? 

I would appreciate tips from anyone with experience with this sort of thing. For instance, my contact must consider file type, size, etc. The upload may go in stages, but we're still talking about hundreds of group sheets at a time.

in Genealogy Help by Barry Smith G2G6 Pilot (145k points)

3 Answers

+13 votes
 
Best answer
I'd suggest all 3 ideas combined, as well as offering a copy to the Family History Library in Salt Lake. Upload it to Archive.org, send it off to the NEHGS, ... AND create a project on Wikitree, asking for volunteers to help add the profiles with the scanned group sheets attached. That way the data is not ever likely to be lost. You might be able to publicize it a bit on WT and find descendants and interested volunteers willing to help with the data entry/transcription, and having the scanned sheets attached makes it possible for many eyes to verify that the data is correct.

We do the same, in effect, with PGM and Mayflower already albeit mainly from books and add sources where available.

Give us a hint... what family or area?
by Bobbie Hall G2G6 Pilot (168k points)
selected by Raewyn Vincent
Be sure to contact NEHGS first before "sending it off." When I spoke with them several years ago on behalf of a client with a similar collection, they strongly suggested that such donations come with a financial contribution to support the incorporation of the info into their inventory and to help pay for storage.  Remember that NEHGS is a nonprofit organization. I don't know about FamilySearch's policy or resources for accepting such collections.
I was able, with NEHGS approval, to send them my Rowley paper collection a few years ago; I've given them the rights to the online website RowleyResearch.org, but they don't want to incorporate it until I am finished with as much as I can do. None of those required money. I am also sending them my database of all the Rowley Branches as I complete it (or at the time of my death) along with my annuity to pay for publication.
That's great, Judy. Happy to learn of this.
+15 votes
My whole data sheet collection got moved into profiles on WikiTree. I know that approach isn't for everyone, and it does involve quite a bit of work to do it, but the reality is that scanned in material is great to preserve what could otherwise be lost, but if you move it into a database format like WikiTree, then it becomes usable content that many people benefit from.

But it depends on how much available time and patience this person has to translate those records into profiles. Another approach might be a combination - scan in a sheet, create a basic profile, attach the PDF to the profile. And so on, and so forth. Not quite as good, but still starts the process and it means that someone could still go in later, read the PDF, and add additional detail to the profile.

One other possibility (again, all about WikiTree) would be to create a Free Space page, scan the records to PDF, and drop them into the Free Space. Then over time, begin to transcribe what's in the records into usable profiles, and link back to the Free Space.

Just a few ideas.
by Scott Fulkerson G2G6 Pilot (935k points)
+1 vote
Contact FamilySearch. I believe they take donations such as this.
by George Fulton G2G6 Pilot (327k points)

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