New Year holidays often inspire new goals and a sense of starting over. This year, Marie Kondo’s The Life-changing Magic of Tidying– now also on Netflix has caught second hand and charity stores off guard as a major trend in de-cluttering and tidying consumes many families home for the school holidays.
Having researched my family history for over twenty years (!), I also had occasion to clean out a filing cabinet recently, considered surplus to needs and reviewed documents I have not laid eyes on in nearly two decades. I had already put a lot of information in my database but it was nice to re-read letters and cards from relatives (some since passed away) who had helped me get started when we were all on the cusp of the internet becoming a major part of our communication and research. My goal will be to digitise a lot of these files but it got me thinking, how my ideal family history office space would look like.
I would need:
A large desk with a PC with a large double screen, a printer and scanner all at the same level.
Good lighting including natural light and window
Plenty of electrical outlets and recharge points for my phone and ipad
External hard drives for backups
A notice board / cork board which can be re-arranged as needed with reminders of upcoming events, my to-do list, inspirational quotes, family group sheets and favourite family photos and library card numbers for remote access to e-resources
Nice stationery and pens for brainstorming ideas and note taking
A tall and wide bookcase for my binders and extensive library
A closed cupboard to store stationery supplies, USB sticks etc., magazine subscriptions and family newsletters
An, "in tray" for currrent data entry into my database or follow up
Favourite photographs of my own family and ancestors framed for the wall
A comfortable chair for the desk and another to sit and read in
A signal booster for my wifi
A fireproof lockable filing cabinet for precious items such as original books written by my relatives over 100 years ago
A large worktable or a folding one with room to put up when needed.
My World Globe on a stand
A "Do Not Disturb" sign for the door.
Now all I need is a spare room.
What would you have in your personal research space?