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5-Gen Family History Photo Scrapbook Plan

Updated on August 30, 2017

Let's plan a 5 generation family history photo scrapbook for the grandkids... and the rest of the family!

We have a wide variety of photos for at least 5 generations of our family - making a scrapbook for each of our two grandkids, a boy and a girl, seems like a great plan. Follow along and see if this will work for you, as well.

We start by going through the family photo collection to find what will work to tell this story. Are your photos all organized? Mine aren't near as much as I would like. This photo is of one of the boxes from my parents - that is their 25th anniversary photo I think I can use, on top.

All photos in this lens were taken by me, of family photos in my personal collection.

Let's talk about the 5 Generation photo concept

5 generations in photos
5 generations in photos

Starting with the two grand-kids as generation one, their parents (our daughter and her husband) are generation two. My wife and I are generation three. My parents are generation four, and my Dad' parents would be generation five.

This scrapbook project might actually become four scrapbooks. With four grandparents, we could do a separate one for each of the grandparents with their parents and grandparents for the five generation of each.

This photo was taken of the photos available fairly readily. Notice they are of varying sources. You may want to choose similar types of photos. For example, does the "restaurant' photo of my wife and I really fit with the commercial photo of my parents? You ( or I, in this case) get to make that decision - after all, this is my scrapbook, right?

Shelf of family photos
Shelf of family photos

Look around the house and office for more photos

Do you really know where they are all located?? ;-)

Here are some more family photos that you might want to consider using in your scrapbook. In this case, the pair in the upper left corner of this shelf is my Dad's parents, back about the time they were married in 1904. Frankly, I'd forgotten this photo was there. I am so happy to find it. It fits right in here.

Another decision to make is how many photos of each person or group will be included in the scrapbook. Notice, just in this photo (that I took), there are two more earlier photos of my daughter (the mother of the grand-kids) along with a couple of younger photos of them. You don't want too many, but you don't want too few either. Right? Of course. You want just the right number, for you - for me! ;-)

Scrapbook designs on Amazon

Do you use pre-designed templates for your scrapbooks? Here are some options available.

Do you try to match the style of photos, or let them vary - I'm interested in your opinion here. Thanks! ;-)

Do you like to 'standardize' the photos you use in your scapbook?

Our grandchildren and their parents
Our grandchildren and their parents

Generation One and Two

This is a really good photo to use for an opening or centerpiece. I will want to make copies, not use the original in a scrapbook - at least that is my approach.

Do I want to include photos of the parents' wedding for example, as well, or photos from their younger years. How much do I include in the scrapbook, that is the challenge as I see it. Where do we really want the emphasis here?

Bill and Nancy (Bolger) Smith
Bill and Nancy (Bolger) Smith

Generation Three

Obviously, I had many photos to choose from on this generation, since this is my wife and I. I chose this one to, again, to raise the issue of what types of photos to include and which not to choose. This is a decent photo, and does represent who we are.

The other issue, at this level, is: We are one set of grandparents. There is another set of grandparents. Do we only include us? Should I include my wife's parents and her grandparents in this scrapbook, or should we split it into two scrapbooks, for four scrapbooks? The other grandparents, I am confident, do have photos of their parents and grandparents as well. Take the poll, below, to express your opinion. Thanks! ;-)

Who all do we include in the 5-generation scrapbook? - I am really interested in your choices here. Thanks! ;-)

Among the following choices, which would you choose, and why?

See results
Leverne (Pete) and Eileen (Kinnick) Smith - 25th Anniversary photo
Leverne (Pete) and Eileen (Kinnick) Smith - 25th Anniversary photo

Generation Four

This is a real nice photo to use of my parents for this 5 generations family history photo scrapbook. Should I use more photos of them? What will that add? This is a commercial photo (actually, a cousin professional photographer in their small town). Should candid photos be included. All decisions that need to be made as I plan my scrapbook.

Ellen (Preston) (Ballard) Smith and William E. Smith
Ellen (Preston) (Ballard) Smith and William E. Smith

Generation Five

The inclusion of my Dad's parents completes the five generations for the scrapbook. I should also probably include my Mom's parents as well. I didn't come across a print photo of them as I was preparing this lens. I do have digital photos. That would be alright, of course, just print a photo, and include them. This is just another planning option we must consider. Do you agree?

Your Comments are requested on this family photo scrapbook plan

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      MarcellaCarlton 3 years ago

      I think it would be interesting to include all grandparents. That way the children will get a better picture of where they come from. I'm currently working on a family genealogy project for my children and grandchildren. It became quite exciting to find that they are related to many, many kings and people of the aristocracy. I had no idea. Scapbooking isn't for me, but I can appreciate what you are doing.

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      AnitaJax 3 years ago

      The four notebook idea breaks the project down into more manageable pieces. It can be difficult to know where to make the breaks between books though.

    • paulahite profile image

      Paula Hite 3 years ago from Virginia

      Beautiful Idea! Sounds like I need to get to work...

    • Mellithorpe profile image

      Mellithorpe 3 years ago

      I enjoyed reading your lens. Scrapbooking is one of my hobbies that I don't seem to have enough time to get back to.

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
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      William Leverne Smith 4 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @Socialpro54 LM: Good for you. Thank you! ;-)

    • Socialpro54 LM profile image

      Socialpro54 LM 4 years ago

      @DrBillSmithWriter: all right, I'm on my word, and came back :-)

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
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      William Leverne Smith 4 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @Socialpro54 LM: Thanks, please do that. I appreciate the visit! ;-)

    • Socialpro54 LM profile image

      Socialpro54 LM 4 years ago

      @Socialpro54 LM: 've reached my limit of likes today, so I come back

    • Socialpro54 LM profile image

      Socialpro54 LM 4 years ago

      Very nice lens!

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
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      William Leverne Smith 4 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @anonymous: Hope you do follow through... ;-)

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      Great lens. My mom collects pictures and I have some; this gives me some ideas.

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
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      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @Magpie Feathers: Good for you. I appreciate your visit... hope it works well for you! ;-)

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I have started scrapbooks, but never carried through with them. I like photo albums better I guess, I have a ton of them filled with photos. :)

    • Magpie Feathers profile image

      Magpie Feathers 5 years ago

      I love this lens. I think I should give it a try too.

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
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      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @anonymous: It seems a person has to really like the 'scrapbooking process' to be very successful at it.... I have boxes of photos... and a few albums... too! ;-)

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      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @MargaritasWorld: Thank you so much for your thoughts. Printing a few of the best photos, at appropriate times, is still a very valuable thing to do... I agree! ;-)

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
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      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @Deadicated LM: Thanks for your comment. Much appreciated. Love those photos! If you have a lot, you can often match up to the ones you don't know... ;-)

    • MargaritasWorld profile image

      Margarita Boettcher 5 years ago from Morrison, Colorado

      Very lovely. Great photos! In all your lenses:) I love history. And I love old photos. Mikes me sad that photos you can hold in your hands are disappearing. But I'm guilty too. It is so expensive to have them printed.Good luck on your project.

    • Deadicated LM profile image

      Deadicated LM 5 years ago

      Nice job, it's good to include as many people/generations as possible if you have the material; if you have a big family it can be quite a bit of work. I was lucky that my family where all shutter bugs.

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image
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      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      @Virginia Allain: Thank you for your comment. Fun to see you really read what I wrote. Neat! ;-)

    • Virginia Allain profile image

      Virginia Allain 5 years ago from Central Florida

      Great reminder, to not use the original photo. It's easy to scan it into the computer now and print out a working copy. That also means you have a digital copy to use online if you wish.