Book Review: How to Use Evernote for Genealogy

Evernote for Genealogy coverI was delighted when Kerry Scott asked me to review her new book, How to Use Evernote for Genealogy. I was even more delighted when she forwarded me a review copy in PDF format. That copy now is loaded with highlights, bookmarks and notes. I thought I knew Evernote until I read this book. Kerry has given me dozens of ideas on using Evernote to improve my research workflows, manage my notes and even simplify everyday tasks. This book is amazing!

The book begins by covering Evernote basics and although I expected to breeze through it, I found a number of tips and features that were new to me. Kerry does a marvelous job demonstrating how to use Evernote with research examples we all regularly encounter. If you weren’t already an Evernote fan, this book will convince you to become one. In addition to step-by-step instructions, you’ll also find power-user tips, workflow recommendations and success strategies.

My favorite chapters were the ones on tags and searching. These two features have done more to make my research manageable than decades of organizational gurus. Kerry starts with the basics and then offers a number of ideas to make the most of them. I loved her “Emma” tip for dealing with people who have multiple surnames. She offers tips for simple searches along with details on taking advantage of all Evernote’s searchable elements.

Chapter 8 is titled “Putting It All Together” and it does just that. She takes many of the everyday research elements and adapts them for use within Evernote. From correspondence logs to research plans, you’ll see how Evernote can make them even more useful. There are also a number of great ideas for using Evernote to geotag notes, track DNA results and index records as you capture them.

The book is full of checklists, worksheets and forms that can be used to set up Evernote for genealogical research. There are all kinds of usage tips – like using annotation tools to highlight the small notice regarding my ancestor on a larger newspaper page. She hasn’t forgotten security either. There are sections on securing your account, backing up notes and troubleshooting problems.

Kerry has created an impressive reference for anyone using Evernote to manage their family history. If will support the needs of the beginner as well as the experienced user.

How to Use Evernote for Genealogy is available at The paperback edition is currently on sale for $18.99 and the ebook edition (PDF) is $25.99. It will be available at Amazon [$19.13] in mid-November and it’s already the #1 new release in Genealogy.


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