Gransnet forums


Creating a family history book

(13 Posts)
Mamie Wed 06-Aug-14 13:19:23

For some years I have been preparing a book of family history for our grandchildren. I have done the research, created a family tree and written individual stories for each set of grandparents, great-grandparents and great-great grandparents. I have collected together photographs to illustrate each story.
I now need to find a product online that will help me put the book together and get it produced for each of the four grandchildren. I have had a look, but haven't yet found anything appropriate. I would prefer to work from my iPad using Google Drive and Google documents, but we have PC and Mac mini as well.
Does anyone have any recommendations?

Grannyknot Wed 06-Aug-14 17:25:32

Wow Mamie, that's impressive. What a wonderful gift for the grandchildren, I love the idea of weaving stories about the ancestral grandparents.

I hope you find appropriate software - I presume you want it to end up in print - rather than an online edition?

Mamie Wed 06-Aug-14 17:45:19

Yes, I want to upload the stories and photos and get it printed and sent out by post. I can find photo books, but I need to add text as well and possibly a family tree.
It has been fun and I wrote it for eleven-year-olds, so the text is simple and clear (and literal for grandson with Asperger's).
Eldest GD is doing a family history project for her new secondary school, so I need to get a move on. She is going to record an interview with me on the iPad.

Grannyknot Wed 06-Aug-14 18:59:56

That's really interesting. I know a friend uses the photobook software from Jessops when he creates his Christmas "funny things off the interweb" gifts - not sure whether this is too basic but I am sure you can add text. it might be too limited for your purpose:

Not sure at all that it would accommodate a family tree.

I made a very sentimental tribute to my mother this year on what would have been her birthday, using Smilebox. I could add music so I chose "It's Only Make Believe" (not so much for the lyrics, but because it was one of her favourites, and I was 'making believe' - 'my hopes, my dreams come true') and sent it round the family, I was amazed at the lovely response I got from family, especially from my aged aunties (her sisters).

rosequartz Wed 06-Aug-14 20:57:59

I know Ancestry will print books for you of your family history, but not sure if this would meet your needs, Mamie, and I think it would be quite expensive.

bimbadeen Mon 22-Sep-14 18:46:50

In todays Daily Telegraph is quite a large advert for Life Book

entitled Everyone has a story to tell...

visit or phone call

0203 291 1169

I haven't visited the site yet but it could be what you want... over to you.

tanith Mon 22-Sep-14 19:02:53

My brother-in-law wrote a family history on just one branch of our family it cost a lot of money to have it printed I will ask my sister where it was done..

bimbadeen Mon 22-Sep-14 20:46:48

Mamie I've just clicked on the site and seen the price WOW a lot of money sorry nearly £3000.00 reckon you could do it with a scrapbook nearly as well..sorry for the lead without checking it first myself..wicked price,

Gracesgran Mon 22-Sep-14 21:06:51

I have used two products for this sort of thing Mamie. I can't remember the name of the first - I used it for my Mum's 90th birthday so she has a memory of the day. I also did one for my son using his and my emails from 2005 to 2008 which took us through his going to Australia, getting engaged, married and right up to waiting to see who would appear from the first bump. I used Smiley Hippo for this. I really like it as you put it on your computer so you are not putting the information on line as you work with it. You then "send" it and there is a choice of formats for printing.

I did have some photos - I will have so many more when I do the next book because of the two children - but it really brought it home to me that it is telling the story that is important. With my mother's 90th book I wrote what each picture was about. It is really important to write the story as well as put pictures in.

Mamie Tue 23-Sep-14 06:37:28

Thanks all. After a lot of discussion with the family, we have settled on a simple plastic binder with separate pages for each "story" with photograhs created on a DTP package and printed. This means that the GCs can each have a copy quite cheaply and it can be updated.
Now all I need to do is get on with it!

Gracesgran Tue 23-Sep-14 09:48:48

Mamie it may also be worth knowing that if you go to and sign up you can use their software to create a family tree and then turn it into a web site for your family. I found I got a lot of information back when I published ours.

Mamie Tue 23-Sep-14 10:45:44

Thanks Gracesgran. I did that with Ancestry a few years ago and found quite a few relations who have come to see us here.

Gracesgran Tue 23-Sep-14 12:00:38

For those just starting the good thing about genopro is that you build your family tree, press a few buttons and it makes a free website. This is available to anyone searching on your names whereas, I think I am write in saying, Ancestry information is only available to subscribers. Ancestry is very good though.