Saturday, March 7, 2020

Recap of "Apres Vous" #Genchat Discussion Q5

#Genchat question 5 - "apres vous"
"Apres Vous" - What Happens to Your Family History Materials?

All week, I've been recapping comments from the two #Genchat "apres vous" discussions on Twitter (February 28-29).

Below are the summarized answers to Q5. These participants' ideas are not presented in any particular order. As you make plans for the future of your family history collection, maybe you'll get an idea or two from these answers.

Q5: Can you identify any institutions that might accept some, or all, of your materials, if relatives are not interested? Participants tweeted:
  • Assemble books of family history (and ancestor bios) to donate (in print or electronically) to family history libraries, museums, archives, etc. Cite your sources.
  • Family history libraries can make our family histories available to future researchers and descendants.
  • Consider where ancestors lived/worked, nationality, military duties, etc. when thinking about where to donate for a good match with one or more suitable institutions.
  • Ask family about donating specific items and let family know where materials are donated if you decide to do this.
  • Photograph, document, and annotate before donating anything.
  • Purpose of donating is to keep items safe, especially if family is not interested in inheriting the collection.
  • Match donation to the interests of each institution, which may mean breaking up the collection so items go to the appropriate place.
  • Can donate transcriptions of family Bibles to appropriate institutions.
  • Can donate military pension records to appropriate institutions.
  • Can donate family letters to appropriate institutions.
  • Be sure donated materials are in good condition (not moldy) and well organized so institution can make them available to researchers.
  • If you can fully identify all the items in your collection and share these stories with family, they may decide to keep all in the family.
  • Make a good case for why your material would fit with each institution's collection.
As always, a shout-out to #Genchat co-hosts Liam "Sir Leprachaun Rabbit" (@leprchaunrabbit) and Christine McCloud (@geneapleau). They work very hard behind the scenes to make all chats fun and functional!

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