November 14, 2017

Family History Books for the Holidays

Want to give someone you love a meaningful gift this year? A photo book about some aspect of your family history is sure to be a hit.

Because time is running short, narrow your focus to something the recipient will enjoy. This doesn’t need to be an epic, cover-all-bases book. Just find a little piece of your family’s past that you’d like to preserve and share.

Imagine creating a book about your mother’s years as a teacher, your grandfather’s wartime service, or the quilts your grandmother made. How about photos taken at a favorite family vacation spot through the years?

The holidays themselves can provide inspiration. Your sisters or daughters might love a book of their favorite Christmas cookie recipes, with notes about where they came from. Or dig up those old childhood photos with Santa to surprise your siblings.

You’ll find lots of other photo book ideas and how-to directions in my article, “An Open Book,” in the October/November 2017 issue of Family Tree Magazine. Recently, I’ve noticed that many of the book publishing sites I mention in the article have announced sales and discounts for holiday orders.

Is creating a larger family history book one of your goals for next year? If so, a narrative book or a multi-generation family history such as the ones produced by MyCanvas might offer the perfect format. The article covers these options as well, including a step-by-step tutorial.

If you’re not already a subscriber, look for Family Tree Magazine at large bookstores or your local library, or order a print or digital copy. There’s lots of other great content inside I’m sure you’ll enjoy—like tracing Italian roots, family tree software and websites, finding US ancestors before 1850 (also written by yours truly), working with a pro, preserving family Bibles, and a DNA testing strategy.  

Now I’m going to take my own advice and get started on a book for my mother-in-law while there’s still time left!



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