The following are resources that you may find helpful in helping you gather and accomplish the things you’ll need to make your geneartogy project.

Gathering Your Family Names, Dates and Photos

The first place to start is in your own family.   Many families have someone who is the family genealogist- probably not professionally, but as a hobby.   See what information you already have and enter that into your project, and then start working on the missing pieces.   Call relatives and start networking within your own relations.   You’ll be surprised at what you can find just by asking enough people.

The next place to go is the internet.   There are many sites available that allow you to do research online- most are free to use or very inexpensive to join.   Often with just some basic information like a name, a birth date and birth place, you can track down a wealth of information on your own family lines.   Many of these sites allow you to communicate and connect with others who are searching for family history.   In many cases you’ll find that all the information you’ll need is already out there on the internet- ready for you to use at little to no cost.

Some sites to try:

www.familysearch.org   

This is a free site offered to the public by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  You don’t have to be a member of the church to use the site and it doesn’t only contain names of church members.  The Church is recognized worldwide by genealogists as one of the most comprehensive resources for doing genealogical research.

Ancestry.com- Free Trial US Deluxe Membership 

Ancestry.com is one of the best run genealogy sites on the internet.  They provide access to billions of records and provide many other value added services.  There are a lot of things you can do for free on ancestry.com, but some of the services do require a membership which is inexpensive and worth it.  Will also allow you to communicate online with other people around the world who may have information specifically about the persons you are searching for.

If you are still coming up short, your next step is to hire a professional genealogist.   Professional genealogists are experienced and trained professionals at researching family history.   They do this for a living and can often save you lots of time over doing it yourself.   Costs vary and will be quoted directly by the professional after understanding the scope of work you want them to do.   We recommend starting with one of the best groups of professionals we know of- who have direct access to the world’s largest genealogical library in Salt Lake City, UT.

ProGenealogists.com
Hire the best professional genealogists to do your research for you!

Scanning/Digitizing/Editing Photos

Most desktop scanners are more than sufficient for what is needed to create your own geneartogy tree.   We recommend scanning at 300 DPI and cropping to be just head and shoulders of the person.

However if you want to have all you old photos professionally scanned and stored digitally to preserve them, there are services that do just this and do a great job.  These services are especially appropriate if you have a large number of photos you want to scan and digitize.  Geneartogy only needs the head/shoulders shots of the individuals that will be part of your tree, but often you’ll come across many other photos- group photos, childhood photos, photos of other relatives that you don’t necessarily need for your geneartogy project, but would like to preserve anyway.  If that is the case we recommend using a professional service.   Our recommendation is:

ScanCafe, the scanning service used by pro photographers and Pulitzer Prize winners. It’s available to you from just 24 cents an image.

You can also try a similar service:

Scanapix.com
Many of your photos will require some photo editing to optimize them for use in your geneartogy project.  We provide an optional photo editing service built right into the site that does all the photo editing for you- which is a time intensive process and requires some fairly advanced digital photo editing skills to do well.   We highly recommend using our service to give you the best looking end result- but our service is not required.

For the Do-It-Yourself types that have a good working knowledge of tools like Photoshop, please follow our Photo Preparation Guidelines (see Pricing Page).   There are other online photo editing tools that are often free and easier to use than Photoshop. You’ll have to have your photo’s already scanned and in digital format to use any of these tools.   Here are some of our recommendations:

www.fotoflexer.com

www.pixlr.com

Framing

We offer your project in several finish levels.

1-       Unstretched.    You’ll receive it as a rolled canvas which you can then take and stretch and frame to your liking.

2-       Ready to Frame.   Pre-stretched and ready to place in your own frame.   We deliberately created our sizes so that they would work with standard pre-made frame sizes which can be found at art and framing stores.

3-       Ready to Hang.   Pre-stretched on wider boards, with the edges painted black and hanging wire installed so that you can hang it directly from the box- no frame required.   Some people like this simplified look.

4-       Framed.   We offer three choices of framing- at three price points.   All are wood framing and all have been specifically chosen to work well with our template colors.   We think you’ll find our framing priced very competitively compared to your local framing shop.   If you can find the right pre-made frame that you like, you’ll probably save money doing it that way- but often people want nicer framing for such a nice family heirloom piece as this.

You can always go to your local framing shop and get a quote for the frame you like by giving them the size of the canvas you order from us.   Compare that quote with what we offer and also with custom framers online.