How to use Pinterest for Genealogy

How to use Pinterest for Genealogy and Family History

Have you ever considered using Pinterest for your Genealogy and family history research? I started using Pinterest for my family's genealogy and I love it! It's a great way to organize the family photographs and documents found around the internet. Plus, as an added bonus, the link to the document and family photo is provided and you can easily share with family! There's no need to save old family photos to your computer (and forgetting the source). And there is no more taking other people's photographs and posting them as your own. Now, with the assistance of Pinterest, you can simply share them through a "pin."

Want to learn more about using Pinterest for your family genealogy and how it can help you with your family tree?

I like to think of Pinterest as an online image search engine. It's a lot like Google, Bing, and Yahoo but with a twist. Once you type in your search words your results are displayed as images and pictures. This can be very helpful for those who do family genealogy. Imagine the surprise when your ancestor's picture shows up and it's a photo you've never seen before! Plus, there is a link attached and you can click to see both the photo and the website where that picture is stored. 

Pinterest provides many benefits for family genealogy. 

1. Pinterest gives you a place to organize your information. 
This information is placed onto what Pinterest calls boards. Boards can be as broad (or as specific) as you prefer. You create them and decide how to organize them.

2. Pinterest allows you to connect with family members you may have never  known.
Other people can find your boards and pins (images) through the Pinterest search button.

3. Pinterest also allows you to organize and save the pictures and documents you find online.
You simply pin them to your boards and the link is saved along with them image. 




Now available on Amazon!
10 Tips for Using Pinterest for Genealogy
by Genealogy Girl Talks





Check out our related posts about using Pinterest for Genealogy here!


Check out our new 30 Day Genealogy Pinterest Challenge! It starts in November 2014! Be sure to join us for all the fun!


I'm joining the 30 Day Genealogy Pinterest Challenge by Genealogy Girl Talks! Click the pin to learn more! Pin it to join!



24 comments

  1. Replies
    1. This is rude. This is a great idea and one that many will use.

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  2. Wow 'Anonymous' . You are obviously a beginner at trolling.

    Melissa, I hope you haven't taken this empty comment to heart.
    I think using your Pinterest account to gather your documents etc. together is a great idea. Especially if there are other family members around the world involved.

    Good luck with your site!

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  3. Thanks for the great site. It is valuable information. I heard a lot of buzz about Pinterest as the National Genalogy Society conference and have decided to jump in. I've got 30 years of experience in research, which was the bronze age of technology (we did have microfiche and computer programs came on 800K floppy discs). The image reference sourcing of information is great. Keep up the good work.

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    1. Thank you Dick for your wonderful comment! I remember those "old" days of family research, too.

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  4. LOVE this idea but I have a quick question: How is it possible to "organize" your pinterest board with genealogy items? It seems that it does not sort alphabetical nor does it sort by date....I really would like to figure out how to do it. Thanks!

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    1. Hello Tree Tracer! Thank you for visiting.

      The best way I have found to organize my boards is to create new boards for each family surname. It helps me keep everyone sorted. Unfortunately, there is not an alphabetical or date sorting feature built into Pinterest. If you are looking to sort them, I would pay attention to the order you pin them. This would allow similar pins to appear together. Does that make sense?

      Another helpful method would be to create a "secret" board, pin your pins to that board, and then "repin" them to a new visible board in the order you prefer. Keep in mind the ones you pin first will appear at the bottom of your board.

      I hope this helps you! Let me know how it works.

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    2. You can sort alphabetically, you just do it by hand. This is how you do it. Click on the board you want to move, hold it there in clicking mode and then move it anywhere you want. I hope this helps

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    3. Pinterest now allows you to drag and drop your boards in any position you want. I did mine manually, but I saw where someone created a Chrome app called Pinterest Sort that will sort your boards Alphabetically and it's available in the Chrome store. I haven't tried that yet. If you want them in some other order, then manual drag and drop is the way to go. Also, there seems to be a workaround for sorting pins within the board. If you click on the board that has the pins you want to sort, Click on "Move Pins" located at the top right. New Buttons caled Move, Copy and Delete appear. Select the pin you want to be in the first place on the board by clicking on the checkmark in the top right of the pin, click on Move, select the same board you are on right now, then click on Move. You would have to make a plan of the order you want your pins to be in for this to work for you. Until someone comes up with something better, this would work, but it's a pain.

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  5. Any idea when Pinterest will start doing subboards? That, to me, would make this a lot easier!

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    1. That would be an awesome feature, Carrie! I agree it would make it a whole lot easier. Hopefully it will be coming soon!

      Did you see the new Apple iOS 8 update? They are now adding the ability to "pin" directly from Safari. I am so excited! Watch for a new blog post on how to do it!

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  6. In January, I am teaching a class about ways that Pinterest can be used for genealogy. I would like to get permission to use this article, with credit of course, to show the class the family sharing aspect.

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    1. Yes you may use this article, Kathy! I am delighted you asked! The more people who use Pinterest for Genealogy the more connections we can all make! I have already found relatives using Pinterest.

      Oh, by the way, watch for a new announcement coming October 2014! I am in the final stages of publishing a new eBook which will be available on Amazon!

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    2. What good is this genealogy program if all the information I provide is uploaded but the information cannot be downloaded. It is no different than FamilySearch or Ancestry.com. They are all take but no give back. I would like to back up the information to MY computer.

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    3. This is easily done Robert. When the document or photo is clicked on, just right-mouse click it and save it directly to your computer. Piece of cake!

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  7. It would be great if Pinterest offered some "sub-boards" to be able to effectively sub divide out the family tree. You could conceivably group by family name on the boards but if you want to show relations, that's where it gets a little harder to do with Pinterest. I've been using Crestleaf.com to basically do what you're mentioning here with Pinterest. With their tree builder you can pull in your names from their family database and then add pictures which can be grouped along with the family tree. It's a nice visual way to sub-group up families along with pictures to keep it all in order.

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    1. Thanks Darryl! I've never used Crestleaf.com before. I need to look into that!

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  8. I like the idea of using Pinterest this way. But I'd want to download all the info somehow for fear Pinterest would go away one day!

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  9. So where would I look to see others pinterests on their family trees?

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  10. I just read the information which is here on Pinterest. Nice, but I have found that all information should be stored not in just one place, but several different places. After 20 years of research stored in hard copies, digital, in many different CDs, DVDs, paper, on hard drives my home burned in January 2009 and all was lost. I started over, but not as hard this time I know where to find what I want. Not storing everything in one place either. Live and learn.

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  11. well i think its a great idea i have found several hard to photographs of ancestors in all honesty it certainly couldn't hurt

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  12. I posted on a Facebook site, asking how to use Pinterest. They are usually great with answers. This time I didn't reach the correct people. This site was a great help to me. Thank you!

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  13. Has this information been updated? I would love to know more about using Pinterest for Genealogy

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