The Wilson-Bingham Family History Web Log

This is a web log or "blog" about efforts to publish the Wilson-Bingham family history in the form of a single hardbound book. Major family names being researched include Wilson and Bingham. If you feel your family history ties into ours, please post a comment to one of the latest postings. Please subscribe to get instant updates.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Finally, an economical way to digitize ALL of your photos

Full disclosure: I swear I have no financial relationship with I'm just promoting their site because
  1. they're So Incredibly Cool.
  2. with more family members archiving their photos digitally, we can more easily share our memories and do family history research is the photo scanning service to beat them all. I haven't tried it yet, but I'm seriously considering it. With stacks of photos fading and deteriorating in my basement and attic, I've long felt a need to back up these memories in a compact digital format for preservation against time. But how can I find the time to do that by myself?

Now, I don't have to. Neither do you. Just open an account at, box up your photos and ship them to their address. Then, they get securely shipped to their secure, state-of-the-art scanning facility in India whose highly trained employees scan them at the highest quality, put them on any kind of digital media you want (the Web, CDs, DVDs, hard drives), and then send them right back to you. They'll even do custom naming of the folders the images are stored in on the disk! The whole process takes 7-8 weeks for most orders, but that's understandable given the number of images they handle (with lint-free gloves and forceps, I might add).

As a gift, you can even send a duplicate set of DVDs to family members as part of your order. That's great for when you want to share the memories while also diversifying the storage locations in case of disaster.

So, why bother doing this at all? Well, think about where your photos are stored.
  • Are all of those photo albums with sticky backs and who knows what kind of plastic cover sheets preserving or destroying your photos? Acid-free photo presentation mediums didn't really come into widespread use until the late 80s.
  • What about the cardboard shoe boxes your other photos are in?
  • Most of all, what kind of paper were the photos themselves printed on? Are those acid free and resistant to fading and deterioration? Chances are, they're not.
  • Now, think about the climate of where you live. Is it dry, humid, hot, or cold, or a mixture of all of the above throughout the year? Photos like to be stored in a cool, dry place free of dust, humidity, insects, and other environmental contaminants. It would be nice if we all had a private, climate controlled storage vault, but we don't.
That's where digitizing your photos is probably one of the greatest gifts you can give to your posterity. It renews the "death contract" on fading photos, especially given that you can restore color, remove scratches and blemishes, and enlarge them. charges a comparatively small fee for restoring photos and has a Professional offering that gives you a number of FREE photo restoration services including automated dust and scratch removal, manual cropping & re-orientation, manual color correction, and manual red-eye removal.

Just do it. Like these folks, you'll be glad you did.


Sunday, October 07, 2007

Genealogy Challenge

From time to time, as I do editorial passes of the book, I come across little mysteries that remain unsolved and tidbits of tantalizing information that would be nice to expand on. I'm going to start posting these to the blog for all of you to comment on there and research.

The first is about when John Powell and his family first arrived in the Salt Lake valley. The history as written by Ruth Young states:
Arriving in Immigration canyon September 26, 1856, they were met by President Young and several members of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles. They brought watermelons for them. He told them not to eat too much, John said, "Brigham Young was quite sensible."

John's little daughter age 4, who walked all the way, got the large piece of bread and butter she had been promised.

In the afternoon they went down into the valley, camping on the square in the 16th ward, staying from Friday until Monday. Brother Brigham Young told them they had fulfilled a prophecy.
What was the prophecy Brigham Young referred to? Was it a specific one he had uttered and is it recorded anywhere? If it is, where? Or, was it part of the overall prophecy that the Church would grow in the West?

If it helps, here is some more information, quoted from the same account:
June 9, 1856 the Saints left for Salt Lake, pushing and pulling handcarts...John and his family were in Edmund Ellsworth company. John was counselor to the captain of his company...[in late August] the McArthur company was with them going to Laramie.

About 21 September, the company camped at Fort Bridger. Here they stayed all night. "The men killed a beef." Mary says, "This was the first meat since we left the buffalo on the prairies." At Fort Bridger they met Brother Parley P. Pratt. Two men from the fort were on their way to Salt Lake, they asked Captain Ellsworth what message they could take and he told them, "Tell them we haven't a bite of food left in camp." They were completely out of provisions.

A relief party met them with food before they arrived in Salt Lake.