Sunday, January 27, 2019

New Year’s Resolution – My Genealogy Disaster Plan

I hadn’t planned to make any New Year’s resolutions for 2019, but changed my mind after I thought, “What if I make only *one* resolution this year?”. One decision shouldn’t be too difficult to keep, I reasoned.

My resolution for 2019 is to create a “genealogy disaster plan” – do something to protect what I cherish the most, genealogically speaking. I searched for articles about this topic and found one by Denise May Levenick. I adapted her two-part, 14 steps plan to suit me.

First, I assessed the risks that I might encounter: water, fire or earthquake damage, hard drive failure, or theft. It was an eye opener to realize there’s so many ways to lose the genealogical and historical items I’ve gathered over the decades.

Heirloom christening gown

Second, I prioritized what I wanted to safeguard immediately: my family’s 90+ year old christening gown (see above) and original documents (vital records).

Third, I’ll digitize those vital records so that I have copies in case of loss. When done, I’ll store the originals and the christening gown (which is already in an heirloom box) together in one container. That container might be a tote that I can quickly grab in an emergency or it might be something more heavy-duty like a water- and fire-proof safe.

My personal genealogy disaster plan is a long-term project, so these are good first steps. Stay tuned for progress reports.

Copyright © 2019, Yvonne Demoskoff.


  1. Your genealogy disaster plan sounds very attainable. Good luck!

  2. What a great idea. I don't have one comprehensive plan yet...only to digitize everything and put it in the cloud.