5 Easy Steps

Step 2b – Set Up Your File Folders

Set up some simple file folders for your family history — you’ll be glad you did!  
This fellow chose yellow folders, but since it’s your family history you can choose
any color you want.  Now isn’t that exciting!

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When you first start researching your family history, you might be able to keep everything straight in your mind — but, that won’t last for long.

When you start interviewing older relatives, doing research at the Family History Center, looking things up on the Internet, writing letters, sending emails, or even visiting libraries, archives and courthouses — you’ll quickly reach the point of information overload.  That’s why we recommend setting up some simple file folders for all your family history stuff.

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There’s no right or wrong way, only whatever works best for you.  However, it’s usually easiest to keep everything about an individual family in a single file folder (so it’s not spread between numerous folders and binders).

Then, once you’ve got your file folders set up, start going through that big pile of family history stuff you’ve got on your table.  Sort it into each family’s folder.  Once that’s done, you’re ready for your next big step towards family history nirvana!

Note: you can keep your file folders in a rack, a file cabinet, a plastic tub, a cardboard box…or whatever you’d like.

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BELOW in the “Extra Stuff” Is A Step-By-Step On:
How To Set Up Your File Folders

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Step 2c.  Sort Your Stuff Into The File Folders

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Okay…so setting up your file folders doesn’t give you an adrenalin rush.  
But, it’s better than watching paint dry.  And, you’ll certainly appreciate having done it every time you try to find what information you have on a specific ancestor.  
So, buck up, show some backbone, and get it done!!!

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It’s really simple…just follow these easy steps:

Step 1 — Buy a box of file folders and a pack of labels.

Step 2 — Fill out your Pedigree Chart as far back as you can.

Step 3 — Make a xerox copy (or print an extra copy) of your Pedigree Chart to mark up.

Step 4 — Circle each husband and wife on your Pedigree Chart.

Step 5 — Number the families on your Pedigree Chart—each new surname starts with #1 and goes back from there…#2, #3, #4, etc.

Step 6 — Neatly write or print one label for each family you circled on your Pedigree Chart.

Step 7 — Put the labels on your file folders — the first ancestor with each surname always starts on the Left Tab of the file folder.

Step 8 — Put the folders in alphabetical order by family surnames — i.e., Crawford first…then Daniels…etc.

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Here’s an illustration of Steps 4-8 to show what we’re talking about…

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Step 2c.  Sort Your Stuff Into The File Folders

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