Thursday, May 5, 2011

Preserving Family Photographs: 1839 to the Present

I seem to repeat myself a lot but I believe that it's the early bird that catches the worm. This morning's catch was a fat and juicy one.

I awoke before the birds at 3:45 am to take part in the latest Legacy Family Tree Webinar " Preserving Family Photographs: 1839 to the Present" with Maureen Taylor, The Photo Detective. The content of this webinar is relevant to anyone who is in possession of a family photo. Sometimes I do not take many notes in these webinars but today found me oohing and aahing while furiously writing notes.

Maureen's talk was well-structured and informative and supported by slides that summarised the content. As well as talking about Damage, Preservation and Conservation of various formats she covered Identification, Labelling, Sharing and Display of family photographs. For those who misssed the webinar it will be available until May 14, 2011 on the Legacy site.  

A few of the tips I noted were:

* Always wear cotton or non-latex gloves when handling photographs
* Never laminate photos
* Store photos in acid and lignin free containers ie Archival supplies
* Metal filing cabinets (without rust) are suitable for photo storage
* Scan your original photos at 600 dpi in tiff format at 100% scale
* Only edit copies of your original scanned images
* Use Glide (very fine) dental floss to remove photos from magnetic albums
* Always label photos on back using a very soft graphite pencil (old paper photos) or pen designed for the purpose

I suggest that you visit the Legacy site and listen to the presentation to pick up many more tips.

Maureen has written a book "Preserving Your Family Photographs" that is available from Amazon in the US. Unfortunately the latest edition is not available at Gould in Australia or my favourite online bookshop The Book Depository.

Recently I attended The Dropbox for Genealogists Webinar with Thomas MacEntee. Although this had less content then Maureen's paced session it was an informative and useful introduction to Dropbox that solved one or two issues that I had with the application. I have signed up for future webinars on Google Docs, Writing your family story and DNA. Sadly I'll be overseas for Maureen's next webinar  and won't be able to take part.

I am a great fan of these "free" webinars that give Australians opportunities to hear from internationally renowned speakers. 
One has the option of purchasing a CD of the presentation after the event and, no doubt, many people do. There may also be available other material by the presenter that can be ordered from Legacy. I find that by watching the webinar on one computer and taking notes on another I am able to make meaningful notes and take part at no cost except for leaving a warm bed in the early morning hours.


Judy Webster said...

The tip about using Glide (very fine) dental floss to remove photos from magnetic albums is new to me. Presumably Glide is an overseas brand, but perhaps a suitable alternative is available in Australia.

Sharon said...

I had registered for this event but was too tired to get up early this morning. Will be listening tomorrow evening.

The Photo Detective said...

I'm glad you enjoyed the webinar. I have a surprise for you in the next month or so. Preserving Your Family Photographs will be available as an e-book with an international resource section. Watch my FB and newsletter for an announcement.


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