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Posted on: July 24, 2023

Learn how to organize and preserve photos for genealogy and scrapbooking

Photo Kay Bjornen

(STILLWATER, OKLAHOMA / July 20, 2023) – The Stillwater Public Library (SPL) is hosting a three-part series on photo organization called “Preserving Family Memories” that will cover planning, organizing and caring for both hardcopies and digital materials. The programs are at 7 p.m. on Thursdays, Aug. 10, 17 and 24. Registration is required.  

The programs are led by Kay Bjornen, a recently retired research data initiatives librarian at Edmon Low Library, who will help participants get a handle on their photos and help them learn about the technology and services that can be used to organize family photos and mementos. 

“Everyone has photos and documents that they would like to care for and digitalize properly, but it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the stack of items or the process of converting them,” Bjornen said. “These programs will give people the knowledge they need to tackle their projects successfully.” 

Participants are encouraged to attend all three programs as they build off of each other. Bjornen also wants individuals to come prepared with questions and to bring specific items that they have questions about.

While the programs are geared toward photo organization, care and preservation, community members interested in genealogy and scrapbooking are welcome to attend, as the programs will assist them in their projects.  

The Aug. 10 program will cover the planning stage. Participants will review the organization process and discover the many methods available to store, sort and display photos.

On Aug. 17, participants will start with hardcopies and then discuss weeding photos, creating descriptions and how to repair damaged photos. 

Wrapping up on Aug. 24 is the final class on digital materials. Bjornen will cover getting photos on smartphones under control, having backups of items and how to share their photos with family and friends.  

Brenna Gilchrist, adult services librarian, thinks the programs will greatly benefit those just getting started on a photo project or individuals who jumped into a project but need help knowing where to go next. 

“I love to scrapbook with family and am excited to learn the different ways of saving and sharing photos,” Gilchrist said. “As a librarian, I also know that many methods people use to scrapbook are not necessarily conducive to preservation. This series will help people learn practices to ensure that their projects will be available to future generations.”   

For those interested in family or local histories beyond this series, the library also has a genealogy room available for the community to use that has access to multiple family research databases, microfilm of old Stillwater newspapers and many reference books. The Payne County Genealogical Society helps maintain the room and typically has volunteers onsite Tuesdays from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m.

You can learn more about SPL’s genealogy services, programs and register to attend the “Preserving Family Memories” series at library.stillwaterok.gov. Registration is required, sign-up online or contact the Help Desk at (405) 372-3633 x8106 or askalibrarian@stillwater.org


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