The other day I was looking through a box (one of a few, sorry to say!) for a document I thought I had when I came upon this one, a printed announcement of the marriage of Milton E. Kerr and Kate E. Pettis. The place of the marriage is unclear, but I suspect it happened in Omaha.
How appropriate it would have been to include it in an earlier post, The Short-Lived Marriages of Milton Efner Kerr! But I hadn't yet entered the data from it into my Family Tree Maker file, and I'd completely forgotten it existed. There's something to be said for that--I'm sure I was equally thrilled both times I "found" it, and who doesn't enjoy a good genealogical thrill? But really, if the thrill of finding were followed by the laborious entering of data and the appropriate filing of documents, maybe the pleasant satisfaction of order would replace the time-sucking frustration of not being able to lay hands on that which you know you have... somewhere!
Therefore, I hereby designate the month of July to be Tidy Your Documents Month, and I invite anyone with a box or folder full of odd genealogical bits and pieces to join the fun. I plan to:
- sort through that stuff and find out what goods I've got on which ancestors
- enter any data or research notes in Family Tree Maker (anything too time-consuming or otherwise inclined to thwart this sorting project will be added to a To-Do list instead)
- scan any documents or photos
- put each item in the appropriate surname binder or folder
- and finally, catalog items pertaining to each direct ancestor (also any others who are of particular interest to me).
My printer made a mess of that, but you get the idea. And hey, you don't get extra points for finding any spelling errors that may have occurred when I began to feel guilty about spending so much time cataloging an inventory for someone in my Hypothetical line.
Anyway, if you think you'd find my Document Inventory form useful, you're welcome to try it out. A blank copy, better than the one my printer messed up, appears below. Click on it to get the enlarged view, then right-click on that and select
By the way, the marriage announcement is in the Kerr binder now, along with another fun document I found in the same box. We'll get to that another time.
Update: Cheryl emailed me to say she'd tried printing my Inventory form but it came out a tiny image in the middle of the page. I emailed her back, betting her a check for a gazillion dollars that she had right-clicked on the image above without enlarging first, but she said that was not the case, and to prove it, she tried again with the same result. Therefore I now owe her a check for a gazillion dollars. She also said if she right-clicked and chose Copy Image, and then pasted it into a Word document, it printed just fine.