Filling in blanks and searching through family trees has always been an interesting past time, but thanks to technology, more people than ever now have access to their family tress in order to discover where they came from, why they look like they do and how they came to be born in a certain place.
Websites such as Ancestry and Family Tree attract thousands of visitors every day just looking to delve further into their past and perhaps come across long, lost relatives. As a result, more people than ever are searching through old family photos in order to upload them onto these sites and help others make the right connections. But old photos are obviously not easily found on mobile phones and memory cards. Instead they are usually tucked away in boxes and albums just waiting to be discovered and uploaded to such sites. However all too often people find that time has taken its toll on these photos and they are falling into a state of disrepair.
Pearl Scan has been a leader when it comes to the digitalisation of documents for many years, but it is also an expert when it comes to heritage scanning in order to preserve historic photos and documents forever.
Naveed Ashraf, Managing Director at Pearl Scan Group, said, “There’s no denying that people place a lot of meaning around photos – especially of people who are no longer with us. Websites which are designed to help connect the historic dots and help people discover their past rely on photos to help jog memories and add value to searches. However as photos didn’t become popular until around 50 years ago, often there may only be a few photos of these beloved family members in existence – and these are likely to be in poor condition due to age. This can be heart-breaking for people wanting preserve these memories and if the documents have particular sentimental, or even historic, value.
“Should this be the case, people can either choose to preserve hard copies in themselves through protective storage means or basic scanning, or they can choose to have their archive digitally conserved – which creates a much clearer result.”
The heritage scanning process follows the standard digitisation scanning process. It involves post-scan image processing in order to ‘uplift’ any lost or faint areas or information in order to restore images almost to their former glory. These can then be saved on clouds, computers and even used as device backgrounds – just like any digital photo. However often these images are uploaded to the internet and genealogy websites and used to help others discover more about their past and connect family members to one another – wherever they are in the world.