How to transfer family research to someone after I die

Family researchers:

I have a bit of a morbid question. Yet, I feel this is an important one. Do you have plans set up on how to pass along the work you’ve done on your families to someone after you die? Does anyone have experience with this? Currently, I have one cousin that I know of that does extensive work on researching the family. Neither of us know anyone in our families that would be interested in continuing the family research after we die. Any recommendations on how to leave your electronic files? I do have a will and plan to update the document on instructions regarding steps to accessing these records, I think? Anything else I should be thinking about?

Thank you!

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Yes, few if any family members will be interested. I look at it as a hobby that is important to me, but I recognize most will not. There’s usually one person per branch of the family that dabbles in family history. If you can recognize them, you could leave instructions to transfer your work to them. Otherwise the only people who will appreciate your work are other researchers, even those unrelated to you. Therefore I’m concentrating on improving and expanding the global shared family tree at FamilySearch while I can. It seems to be the only collaborative tree that will survive, at least for a few decades. And by then the data will no doubt be harvested to continue on in other forms as technology evolves.

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I Like this idea as well

1 thing that would help is like an e mail feature with attachment for any multiple docs written… I want to set something up myself

1 thing i discovered from a relative living is that they shared with me that they were working on their tree some on ancestry and took the same tree line to a certain point… yet another reltive i have yet to learn more about went deeper in generations…

i to have a younger sibling tinkering with this a little and i have to communicate with them about their information compared to what i have…

as i am older by about 10-20 years i have more of an idea of what our grandfather had done let alone gma… as our dad is way up in age its not as easy to learn more but i think there is still more out there besides what the few relatives i chatted with…

i would like to share these other facts with my other sibling and anyone else so if they want to continue on from what i know they can, even for my moms line…

Mark

not really morbid question – if no one died – there would be much less research to do.
The challenge is media and how to store. GEDCOM has been a long time standard so you want a GEDCOM version.You could store media,RM Database , and GEDCOM file on removable USB thumb drive, but those can fail. Cloud storage usually needs password access, but could go out of business etc. The bottom line, is they should be stored in more than one place. At some point there will be someone who will want to continue and appreciate what you have done. It was after our 2nd children was born I began working on our tree. My cousin started the work in the 80’s…all on paper.

Paper is useless and will die with you as will the interest and computer capability of most relatives if any. Put a public tree with media and sources citations on Ancestry and my heritage. Upload your data to Family search. Other people can mess with your data but the LDS church is more likely to outlast Ancestry. See if some other public viewable websites make sense for hosting your tree data. Gedcom is a poor format with changing specs and data loss in transfer.

Keep in mind that this is a personal hobby and not an intellectual treasure of general interest.

Funny that many of the records I am using in my research are on paper and date back to the 1500s. I don’t think they are useless. Can’t say the same for the 5-1/4" floppies though.

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Totally agree…

paper is not useless… it holds legal binding words on it like a fax sent off… or something public noterized… certificates like birth or marriage etc…

we still print out stuff to this day, why… well harddrives still crash at times… and some people still print out things from harddrives, and when you put stuff on clouds it then becomes their property… or you are unable to do anything because said cloud service wants to charge you money just to access your own digital data…

oh and btw i still see some dot matrix printers still being used and old ibm pc cumputers within small businesses here and there…

Mark

Rooty,

I’m not convinced that paper is useless. There are paper books (printed ones, not handwritten ones) dating from the 15th century. Now, if I only had a disk drive for my 8” floppies, or a tape drive for my reels of 1/2” tape. Just kidding, of course.

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@emilyhauer — my hubby has a very young cousin who recently took up the torch of genealogy that her g- grandmother started on over 40 years ago-- the g-grandmother left the family a scrapbook basically detailing what she had found the old fashion way by going to courthouses and writing letters to cousins-- the g-grandmother also shared her info with distance cousins-- and while one of those distance cousins shared it with me in fact form, I was totally blown away when the g-granddaughter sent me a couple of pages from her g-grandma’s scrapbook —I also found things on those pages that I never knew–so definitely leave some kind of paper trail …
Besides uploading a tree to ancestry and other sites, consider donating a copy of your info to the local historical society where your ancestors were from or the state historical society…