family heirlooms

How to Prepare Your Physical Artifacts for Long-Term Preservation

At FamilyArc, we employ museum-quality archiving standards to ensure your artifacts will last far into the future. After all, your family memories, whether it’s photos, videos, documents, or other media, are an important piece of the legacy you’ll leave to your loved ones.

As you look around your home, you may notice quite a few physical objects that hold sentimental value. Many of these objects are too large or fragile to ship. FamilyArc will help you preserve these items through photographing and/or digitizing them at your home. Contact us for more details about our on-premise services.

In this article, we’ve put together a checklist and some tips to help you prepare your physical items for long-term preservation.

What to Include

When deciding what pieces to include in your archive, consider:

  • If the items will help you achieve your family archive goals
  • If they will still be important to have ten years from now
  • How many similar items you already possess

Aside from documents, photos, and audio/video recordings, other physical artifacts may include the following:

☐ Jewelry
☐ Glassware, dishes, and pottery
☐ Silver/metalware
☐ Clothing (i.e. baby’s first onesie, monogrammed bibs, uniforms, wedding dresses, etc.)
☐ Musical instruments
☐ Artwork
☐ Trophies and awards
☐ Furniture
☐ Toys
☐ Collectibles
☐ Children’s locks of hair and baby teeth
☐ Handmade items

How to Organize

The best way to choose a naming structure is to make piles of your items and see where the most sensible groupings occur. If you have a lot of items, you may wish to think about subcategories to keep your organizational system as simple as possible. For example, under “Clothing,” you could separate items into three subcategories: baby clothes (arranged according to child), uniforms (arranged according to year), and formal dresses (arranged according to event).

Want more tips on how to prepare your artifacts for long-term preservation—including photos, videos, and other physical items?

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