Sunday, November 22, 2020

CORA’S SCRAPBOOK ~ The BEGINNING of a new series– My husband’s great grandmother, Cora Emma Brown Hall (1854-1933)

BACKGROUND ~ I have been researching mine and my husband’s family for over 17 years now.  My husband’s paternal side was one of the first lines that brought me those jumping for joy moments in my genealogy research.  I know his lines, names, dates and places very well.

When I began blogging in 2010 I had no idea I would still be at it 10 years later.  I also had no idea how many new cousins and connections I would make because of my posts.

In Feb 2018, I was contacted by a lady named Kathy who said she was my husband, Ron’s cousin.  She was someone who was previously unknown to us.  She lives within an hour of us.  When her father passed away in 2019 she told me of a scrapbook that came into her possession.  Our goal was to try and get together so I could have a look at it.  She said she didn’t know who it had belonged to, but that it contained newspaper articles and perhaps other family memorabilia.  As happens, time went by and we were no closer to arranging a meeting.  Then add Covid to that and here we are.  Kathy contacted me a few weeks ago and said she’d like to mail the scrapbook to me as she felt I could make use of it better than she could.  Well, of course I was blown away and said “sure.” 

This box arrived a couple of days later.

I opened the box and found a very carefully wrapped, very old, falling apart scrapbook. 



I couldn’t wait to find out.

Of course I opened the box and ever so carefully removed the scrapbook.  I even peeked inside, just a little bit.

The cover

A view of the spine - you can see how torn apart it is

I had to proceed with due caution so as not to destroy any contents.  I already have the white gloves to handle the pages.  But, what I didn’t have was the archival tissue paper I knew I would want to put between each page.

I immediately went onto Amazon and ordered Acid Free Archival Tissue Paper.

While I waited for the tissue paper to arrive, I began thinking of what size box to order, to store this scrapbook.  I knew I had ordered some archival boxes several years ago.  I looked inside my office closet and lo and behold there was a box that might be just right.  The one and only box of this size.  The box is 13” x 13” x 3”.  IT WAS A PERFECT FIT!  Just a bit bigger than the scrapbook which allows for placing protective tissue paper around it.  And not allowing for any movement.  I was thrilled.

The box that was a perfect fit

I only had to wait 2 days for delivery of the tissue paper.  Now my work begins.

My next step is open this treasure page by page and take photos of each page. I use my Canon Sure Shot camera, which has served me well in many libraries and courthouses. 

TIP:  Why not use my iPhone 11, which has a great camera, to digitize these pages?  Believe me, I do love the cameras provided on smart phones these days.  But, I prefer the stability of a regular camera as well as the ease of transfer.  I just remove the SD card and transfer it right to my computer.  Once that’s done, I back the folder up to Dropbox and also store it on an external hard drive.  And….I have Carbonite cloud backup for my whole computer.  This is what works well for me.  I always keep that original order of the images.  When I begin to edit the images I will work from a copy and can arrange those copies in any order I choose.

I cannot wait to share all the wonderful genealogical treasures that I’ve found in this scrapbook.  Thank you Cora Brown Hall for creating it.  And thank you cousin Kathy for so kindly allowing me the privilege to be the caretaker of such a treasure.

Stay tuned for the next episode.

Happy hunting,

Michigan Girl

Copyright ©  2010-2020   Diane Gould Hall



  1. Replies
    1. Melissa. You were whispering in my ear the whole time. I’ve enjoyed and learned from your posts. Thank you.

  2. How exciting! I have a lot of similar material inherited from my grandmother but not so nicely organized in a scrapbook. Just FYI, the link in your list of articles for this first one is not working. When I click on it, it takes me to my own blog on Blogger. All the others work fine. I put my detective skills to work and managed to find your posts for November 2020 and got to the first article that way. Thought you might want to know so you can fix the link. Looking forward to more posts on Cora's scrapbook!


I look forward to reading your comments. If you have any connection to the people mentioned in this blog, please let me know. I write about mine and my husband's ancestors and would welcome new information or meeting a new cousin or two. Thanks for visiting and come back soon.