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To Store or not to Store...How, is the Question

Storage is a simple matter of proper conditions and materials. All materials used for storing memorabilia should be acid and lignin-free. This includes boxes, photo albums, scrapbook materials, and plastic containers. According to Maureen Taylor who writes articles in Ancestry Daily News (Saving, Ancestry.com) you should never use those photo albums "with self-adhesive or magnetic pages" since over time they can cause damage.

Maureen also has a list of conditions, which if not properly accounted for, can damage or destroy your memorabilia. (Protected, Ancestry.com)

These conditions are:
  • Temperature
  • Humidity
  • Light
  • Pollution (Indoor & Outdoor)
  • Pests

Maintain a constant temperature (about 65F – 70F) and a constant humidity (30% – 50%). The right, or rather wrong, combination of temperature and humidity and you end up with mold. (Protected, Ancestry.com)

By using acid and lignin-free boxes, nested inside each other, you can help maintain a more constant environment. This also protects against the indoor pollutant – dust, and light. (Protected, Ancestry.com)

Sunlight and fluorescent lights are both capable of causing damage. Maureen stated in her article " Protected from the Elements: Storing Heirlooms at Home" that photos, along with many other items, fade due to exposure to sunlight. Protect your heirlooms by keeping them out of the direct sunlight. Use ultra-violet (UV) filters on windows and fluorescent lighting. (Protected, Ancestry.com)

Storage is best in areas that receive no light, are dry, and do not suffer extreme variations in temperature and humidity. Various storage options must all have one thing in common; they must be acid-free and lignin-free. (Protected, Ancestry.com)


The will you need is in a safe onboard the Titanic.

Floor: The place for storing your priceless genealogy records.

Your families never had attics, much less Bibles or boxes full of photos.

More Definitions of a Genealogy Addict:

Your neighbors think you are crazy, your friends wonder if you are, and you know you are.

You can't drive past a cemetery without wondering if your ancestors are buried there.

You have to watch the credits of a movie to see if any of the surnames are ones you are researching.

You ask all the people you meet, what their grandparents surnames are.

You move to a new town and the first thing you look for is a historical or genealogical society in the area.

Old friends who knew you before you were into genealogy begin sending clippings about dead or live people with your surnames (and you know you have been talking about genealogy too much!)