Scan and Archive Family Photos

Stock Photo - Original 1940 antique photo - happy woman

© Photographer Carla F. Castagno |

Family photos are a real treasure, but unfortunately, they are vulnerable to storage conditions and handling. Those precious nuggets that engender wonderful memories can fade, tear, become soiled, or even crumble away.

Luckily, with today’s digital photos, you can preserve your photos easily on your computer or some other digital storage device. But what do you do with the delicate black and white or sepia photos that are stashed away in long lost photo albums, or the shoeboxes full of snapshots that you took before cameras went digital?

You convert them, of course! Scanning them and creating digital images is one of the best ways to catalog and organize your photos, but it can be time consuming. Here are some tips to help you through this process:

  1. Look for a trusted service that will do the scanning for you. Vendors who specialize in this area will be able to convert your pictures much quicker than you could with your own home scanner, and their services are affordable, too. Two to check out are or
  2. Take time to sort through the photos you want to convert. Eliminate duplicates, blurry images, and any photos that aren’t meaningful. If you don’t recognize the people in the photo or don’t remember where or why you took the picture, you probably don’t need to keep it or pay to have it scanned.
  3. For extra security, store your digital images in multiple places, such as your computer hard drive, an online photo service (Picasa, Flickr, iPhoto), DVDs, zip drives, or an external hard drive.
  4. Devise an organizing system and create folders to store images. For instance, you could organize by date, event, or person. Be consistent!
  5. When you download your latest digital images from your camera, take a few minutes to delete those that are blurry or repetitive. If you took several pictures of the same subject to ensure a good shot, you should delete those that aren’t up to snuff.


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  1. […] coverage is up-to-date and you have a full inventory of personal belongings and valuables. Scan your family photos so you can recover them should your prints get lost or […]

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