It is important to organize your family history work. I know just the word "organize" can give me the heebeegeebees, but it is vital. Not only is it important to be organized in your family research for yourself, but also for your children and others that will be helping you on this journey. Here's a couple images of how I have organized my files in the past. Today, I lean probably a little too heavily on keeping everything organized onto FamilySearch. It is so easy to attach documents, pictures and stories to my ancestors that I don't write things down as often as I should. Yesterday, I went onto my family tree and a great great grandfather was missing that was on my tree before. It made me realize that I do need to keep better records on my own to make sure that I have what is most accurate and that I can make corrections when needed on my family tree. The "Watch" button on familysearch is super helpful too. It will send you an email once a week with any changes that were made to anyone on your watch list. It is helpful in making sure whoever made the changes, made them correctly as well as letting you connect with others working on your same family ties.
My filing system might sound confusing but for me it helped me keep track of everyone. I used numbers and letters to file my ancestors. I started with a master list of relatives. I just added them in as I was working on that particular person. I gave them a letter depending on how they were related to me for example I would be "A" and my siblings would be an "A" as well. My 1st cousins would also be an "A." From there, my parents would be a "B" and their siblings and 1st cousins would be a "B" and so on. Then I would give each person a number. So I would be "A1" and my sister would be "A2" and brother "A3" and so on. My aunt would be "B1" and my uncle "B2" etc. Then on my master list, I had everyone alphabetically listed and their number/letter like "A3" would be listed by their name so if I needed to find my great great great cousin on my mom's side, I could look up her name on my master list and then go right to the tab in my folder. So I had a set of tabs for the letters and then multiply number tabs. I might just have to make a video of me explaining this too you someday soon. Whatever method you use, paper or the computer, just start getting organized today. Do, today's challenge is to gather whatever papers you might have and get them into a system that works for you. Ready, set, go! Happy Organizing!
Here's a great video about "Write It Down." I will post a worksheet you can use to keep your research organized tomorrow!