what is shoeboxing?

I’ve already introduced you to the super-cool website, called 1000Memories, but today it gets even better! They are unveiling a redesigned site, that allows you to create multiple collections (or shoeboxes) of images.

Shoeboxing then is the act of getting priceless photos out of your closets and off your computers and into nifty new (virtual) shoeboxes where you can collaborate with the people you invite to document the “rest of the story” that is so often missing.

I was invited to take the new site for a test drive, so last Friday morning, while getting kids off to school, I ran downstairs, opened my “older pictures” library in iPhoto and started uploading 300+ digital images from my mother’s McDougal family. I could NOT believe how slick the upload process was and now when I log into my account, I see …

a gorgeous display of my McDougal shoebox, which I’ve initially invited my mom and my aunt Shirley to help me with. We can each “edit” these images, adding the names, dates and details we know!

I think 1000Memories will do for photos, what Pinterest has done for ideas–simply because of the easy, visual access, the connection and the collaboration … plus, they’ve also partnered with ScanCafe to help people like us get all of our printed photos and snapshots digitized. I have TWO ScanCafe scanning kits to share. Leave me a comment before April 9th (at noon) and tell me what kind of pictures you’d like help scanning and I’ll pick two WINNERS!

If you’ve not yet created an account at 1000Memories, or downloaded the snazzy iPhone app which will easily scan (with edge recognition technology) and archive the digital images, then I invite you to take the lid off and explore …

Click here to learn about the Shoebox App!

It will be well worth your while!


  1. I’m loving using Shoebox to scan heritage photos that have been living in old albums that are falling apart, or hiding in an envelope somewhere. With a family reunion coming up, I need to now get siblings and their descendants involved on 1000 Memories.

    Amazing ideas like this is why I keep coming back to your blog, Stacy. You inspire me in my memory keeping.

  2. Maria J says:

    Wow! I love memory keeping, photography and scrapbooking – BUT (there is always a but) – life has changed for me recently and my time has a few more constraints. I have been searching for a way to organize and store my photos so that they will be easily accessible. This is the answer!!!!

    Thanks for always sharing fantastic ideas and for being such a fun person :)

  3. What an incredible site & idea. I am so going to join. Although not sure how I can get them all scanned!

  4. Chrissy Pope says:

    I would love to scan my parents wedding pictures. Hope I win!

  5. Marilyn says:

    What a great idea. I’d love to scan the photos that are in a real shoebox in my mother’s attic and have my family help me identify the people in the photos.

  6. I would love to scan slides from my husbands childhood and earlier (from his parents). My father in law iis suffering from dementia and Parkinson’s and I’d like to get them in a viewable means to share and learn from before he’s too far gone to remember any of it to share with us.

  7. Ronnie Crowley says:

    I have some pictures from my mother-in-laws which I need to return but would love to scan them first and get her then to help put details to them.

  8. Oh. WOW! What a great way to scan in all my dad’s old slides from his mission, and all the square-format (not sure of the film type) pictures from my infancy. I’m thrilled to see something so easy to use!

    You’re so great. :)

  9. Gosh! Where would I even start!?!? So many pictures. Heritage. Before digital. Childhood. I’d love to have them all scanned!!! Thanks for a chance to win!

  10. Lisa Howells says:

    I am very curious about ScanCafe. I have yet to open the scanner I bought today for slides and negatives. I will go read about all this and discover more delights for my box of 1970s family pictures. Thanks again Stacy

  11. So very cool! I have a huge box of photos that my parents had reprinted for family members back when I was a kid that I would love to scan, plus we have some old tin photos from my husband’s family. We aren’t even sure who most of the people are, but we know that they meant something to someone!

  12. Nicole Powers says:

    I have a bunch of pictures that my Grandmother has of her, her parents and even her grand parents. I would love to get them scanned so I could organize them & print copies for my cousins too

  13. I would love to use Shoebox for all the heritage photos I have.

  14. I would like to scan the many photos that I have from my grandparents and their parents. Scanning and organizing these photos would be such a gift for my mother and my other relatives.

  15. Maureen says:

    I have all my Gramma’s scanned, moving on to my childhood.

  16. Wow!!! Before my grandma died, she gave me ALL of her photographs because she felt of her 9 grandchildren, I’d cherish them the most and take care of them. Now I feel a great responsibility to preserve them in a way that honors my grandmother, and her past, that contains photos of her grandparents. I’d love to find a way of making these memories accessible to the 8 other grandchildren that were not as fortunate as I was to receive them.

  17. Wow! Where to start? My negatives? All of my Dad’s slides? All of my grandparents photos? All of my husband’s grandparents’ photos? Sounds like a job for Scan Cafe! This partnership sounds so exciting! Thanks, Stacy!

  18. Lee Ann Galligan says:

    So many photos…so little time. I would scan all the black and whites of my brothers, and parents (which have both passed) and of my husband’s family. What a cool idea! Thanks for sharing.

  19. Sharon Holesh says:

    I am one of 6 children and I would love to scan all our family’s childhood photos. Many are the small square ones that are in photo albums with the photo corners.
    Thanks Stacy!

  20. My grandfather started a huge genealogy collection that my dad has now inherited. I think it is so important to get the “stories” before all of the “story tellers” are no longer with us. I have lost three grandparents in four years and realize how important the time we have now is to gather family memories of fame history.

  21. I have at least two shoe boxes of random photos plus everything I’ve loaded since the digital era began. The older photos per-digital need scanned and I typically just upload them to a print site and order and let the scanned images “sit” in their storage forever and this would help me scrap my photos better and with hopefully more info to include in the layouts I create. Really wonderful idea!!!

  22. I need this to help with my mother’s side of the family. I always worry what would happen if our house burned and our photos were lost.

  23. My daughter started our family tree on ancestry.com, and I’d love to take the very few photos I have, scan and post them so my aunts, my mom, and cousins can help get as many details as possible about our photos and ancestors.

  24. I am the ‘historian’ for both sides of my family… And have inherited so many pictures, it’s beyond overwhelming! I was wondering how I was going to accomplish this HUGE task! Thank you so much, Stacy, for sharing te info about ‘shoeboxing’… I can’t wait to get started!

  25. scrapper al says:

    I have at least a few thousand slides from my childhood and various vacations (because at the time, everyone took slides for the quality of the image). I’d love to have them scanned. I can’t imagine doing it myself.

  26. I’m currently scanning all of my parents’ old heritage photos. 1000Memories is such a great idea for a site! I’ve used ScanCafe and they do a great job. Thanks for the chance to win!

  27. I would love to be able to scan all my dad’s old pictures. He passed away when I was 9 and so many of the pictures I have from when he was little are almost like metal, to be able to get them someplace safe would make my dad. I also had a daughter who passed away at almost 10 months and to know that all the photos we have of her would be safe somewhere would be the best feeling.

  28. Terrie in AZ says:

    I need to have my Mom help me in identifying many of the people in the family photo’s I have collected. When I tried to have my Gramma help me, she couldn’t remember so many of the people in the photo’s and until we can figure out who they all are, we are stuck!! This would help so much…thanks for introducing it to me here Stacy.

  29. BettyLou says:

    I’d love to have help scanning the many slides my father took.

  30. i have old slides from my childhood that i’d love to scan or save somehow.
    thanks – ill look into these ideas, julie

  31. Kate Fortune says:

    I so need this! I’m drowning in old photos that are not organized and am currently doing our family tree. Thanks for the opportunity Stacy.

  32. Mercedes says:

    I have a very old album upstairs from when my grandparents were in Germany. I am not sure how long ago they were taken but I do know it was before my mother was born in 1952 but after her older brothers were born. Unfortunately due to a family squabble I have to send the pictures back to my uncle and will probably never see them again.

  33. I have 2 albums of my mother’s family from around 1920 to 1940

  34. Heather Solis says:

    I would love the chance to try Scan Cafe. I have a huge box full of old family photos that I have never dared to scrapbook since I don’t have negatives or digital copies.

  35. Rita Legge says:

    Thank you for sharing this site!!! I have lots of old photos & just a few notes here & there. I plan to check out the site now.

  36. I have SO many photos I would like to scan! My dad passed away in August, and I want to get his large collection of photos in digital. He has some from when they moved the old farmhouse to the opposite side of the road on huge barrels. Amazing to look at! Also, my mom is an only child and I would love to get all the photos of my grandparents and her childhood organized while she can still share with me who is in each photo.

    Thanks for the chance to win!

  37. I have a box of photos that came from my grandmother’s house. I’d love to get my mom and aunts involved in helping me identify some of them.

  38. What a great way to collaborate on stories and information in pictures. Excellent avenue for memory keeping! I would like to make my grandmother’s photos accessible and capture the memories before she is gone.

  39. Alison L says:

    This sounds so great! I have a big family…42 first cousins, 7 brothers and sisters, and I know that if we all combined our efforts we could do amazing things. I am excited to look into this ! Thanks!

  40. I’ve just downloaded the app and scanned two photos of my son as a baby. They’ve been e-mailed to him {he’s in the Navy training in Charleston right now} and I think he’ll be smiling big. They’re photos of him with his Great Grandparents who are no longer with us.

    I remember you mentioning Shoebox before, but didn’t act upon it and then forgot. We appreciate you keeping us informed of new ways to keep us all excited about memory keeping. Now, do I do laundry and change the linens or finish scanning the rest of the photos in his baby book? Hmmmm.

  41. I would live the chance to check out this new technology! I have four huge plastic bins of photos them I took from my Mom’s place when she died. I would love to get thee it so the rest of the family can help finish her story. Thank you!

  42. Who wouldn’ love to win this? I inherited all of the photos from my mother & father in law when they passed away a few years ago. I’d love to be able to scan and share them with family so that I could get more details about their lives to go with the pictures.

  43. Theresa says:

    Ohhh! I would scan a box of photos that my mom has. Literally it is THE box of photos for our entire family…and my dad’s too. Thanks!

  44. I have so many photos of my parents and grandparents. I am one of nine children. We need to get together and share. Online is the only way it will happen. We have been concentrating on our descendents. We need to include the ancestors as well and share them in a more interesting way with their descendents.

  45. I had no idea this site existed! I would love scanning the old photos my husband inherited so we can use them with our genealogy.

  46. I have a giant box of old photos from my mom’s side of the family. Sadly, I have no idea who is in most of them, or the stories they are depicting. I would love to use 1000 memories to be able to show and share with other family members to see if together we can rebuild some of that history!

  47. I was just looking at the boxes of old family photos I have and feeling completely overwhelmed with the thought of dealing with them. This would definitely help get me motivated to organize them. Never heard of this before. Thanks Stacy!!

  48. kimberly jones says:

    I have pictures going back to the early 1900′s before and after the main street of our small town burned – this fire had a permanent effect on our town and is still referred to today. I would love to be able to share these w/ the local newspaper, town historians, libraries, etc. Knowing that a town historian can add a note and someone else will have that reference as well. It gives me chills just thinking about the possibilities and how fortunate we are to have the ability to share and gather information. Eventually I’ll get the old family ones I have as well but knowing that I have these historic pics that involve not just my family but our community sitting in my house scares me to death. As always, thank you Stacy for sharing your love!

  49. I have all my old family pictures scanned. But now I am redoing my college photos. I scanned them at 300 dpi as jpgs and now I want to redo them as 600 dpi TIFFs, which is preservation quality. I also have a lot of college memorabilia to scan!

    I started a local business doing whate ScanCafe offers. The difference — 1) I COME TO YOUR HOUSE. NO need to take that one rare photo of Great AUnt Suzy and send it off to India for weeks or months. Your memories never leave your house and 2) I have a masters degree and 13 years professional experience in digital archiving.

    I have had one client and it was so fun! I loved going to her house with my scanner and laptop and scanning her old family photos! I am working on getting more clients now.

  50. I`m in love! I think:) Thanks for the tip!

  51. BARB TOPPING says:

    Stacy, I am posting more to say hi than for a chance to win. Currently I could not use the app, but am looking forward to a day when I might. Perchance I do win, please pass it on to someone else. I hope you are having a marvelous vacation, lots of fun and relaxation. Enjoy!

    As I go through the steps from the Photo Freedom class, I have been scanning and scanning photos going back to the late 1800′s. These are living in Smart Albums but it would be so smart to upload them to 1000 Memories. Then I could have some help in identifying people. The shoebox app sounds amazing. What a time saver. I am hoping to have an IPhone before the end of this year. This is one more point to show my dh why I need an IPhone.

  52. We have just moved and moved again my Aunt and Uncle into the nursing home and hospital. After going through some of their belongings I came across many old photo albums (the sticky kind – Yikes!) now today after reading your post – my mind is just whirling with the opportunity I have with Shoebox to catalog their memories for my cousin and his children! Thanks for always finding ways for us to capture and keep our treasures! tw

  53. Love the idea. Does this mean i have to trade in my new android for a iphone? Hope they get an android app

  54. LOVE this – I’ve had ‘scan the shoebox’ on my list of to-do’s for way too long!

  55. Charity says:

    I’ve had a big box of pictures from the days before I got a digital camera that I’ve been wanting to scan for a long time! ScanCafe sounds like a great way to do it!!!

  56. My family is scattered all over the country and this would be a great way for us to share our photos and identify the family members in our old family photos before another generation is lost to us.

  57. What an amazing concept, thanks for sharing about this Stacy!

  58. Nancy B says:

    awesome concept! I think I may need to do just this to share photos with my husband’s family and my cousins – since I have all of the family treasures from my mom’s side of the family. One of the perks of having my 90 yr old grandma live with me!! :-)

  59. Christine says:

    Just got my first iPhone. My great uncle is the only sibling still with us from my grandmothers family of 8 children. I would love to upload pics of them and get his input.

  60. My wife has a collection of pictures and negatives from pre-digital days that we would like to scan…both to have and to be able to get the giant box out of our guest room! ScanSafe seems like it may be a good option for that.

  61. This is great! I will have to check it out. I was just thinking how am I going to find out who all those people are in some boxes of un-marked photos from my mom’s items. I still have a few living relatives that could help me, but they are all over the country. Love this idea!

  62. I have boxes of photos and slides that my Dad took when we were growing up, as well as many heritage photos I inherited from my parents. What a gift it would be to be able to access them digitally! Thanks for the opportunity!

  63. I would like help scanning photos of my husband’s family. We married late in life and he inherited a trunk full of photos when his mother passed away. I would like to scrapbook about his family but need to get the photos scanned and it’s too overwhelming for me.

  64. Shannon L says:

    What a cool thing that I can use my iphone to scan in my photos! I am so excited to find out about this as I have literal shoeboxes full of old photos that i would love to organize and share. Thank You!

  65. Karen Schmidt says:

    interesting! I have my grandmothers family pics that i just put in an album, i would love the chance to scan them to aleast have a digi copy of them. Right now is the only copy I have. Thanks for the chance to win.

  66. Jacenda G. says:

    Stacy – this is amazing! I recently lost both my parents over a span of two years and have albums and boxes and tubs of photos from my growing up years as well as many heritage photos from their parents. I’m overwhelmed with the process of how to organize these and save space in my small ranch home. I’m currently just trying to keep up with my 2 young boys and getting their lives scrapbooked! Thanks for the information on these products and the chance to win! I’ll keep my fingers crossed!

  67. This is so great. I am planning to upload the 3,000+ photos we inherited from Kelly’s grandmother. I love that other people can add information!

  68. I would love to be able to easily scan our old family photos. Both my parents passed away, at fairly young ages, and many, many photos of them, and of my siblings never made it into albums. We have scads of them that need attention. It would be so wonderful to be able to scan them and have digital copies that I could share with my brothers and sisters, so we could all be able to access them. Thanks for the chance to win. I would be over the moon!

  69. Karen Neder says:

    OH MY! I would love to scan my wedding pictures, pictures of the two years I spent with the Peace Corps in Africa, my dad’s (millions!) of slides of every vacation we ever took (he ONLY took slides!), my mom and dad’s old pictures from their early lives, I could go on and on! We are having a family reunion this summer (we only get together every 5 years) and it would be great to have some pictures in a ‘shoebox’ for everyone to contribute to! Thank you, Stacy, for sharing this info with us and for the chance to win!


  70. This would make me beyond thrilled!! I have two large boxes of photos of my mother and father’s childhoods. My father passed away at age 60 but thank goodness I still have my mom. Photos are a huge passion of mine and I would love to get all thos photos scanned!

  71. I have my “treasure”- about 100 pictures dating between 1870 to 1940- that I want to scan and save for my many cousins and their families. I would love to win.

    Thanks for the info on 1000 memories and the shoebox app. Checked out the site and already downloaded the app; I’m looking forward to playing at/with both!

    • Oops- just discovered that I can’t upload to 1000 Memories from my iPad!

      Oh, well, later on from the computer. Still looks like a great idea.

  72. Katie Scott says:

    I’ve inherited boxes and boxes if old family photos & journals & records & Bibles. I would scan those in – I love the idea of having extended family help with identifying who’s who.

  73. Kary in Colorado says:

    I am the person in my extended family who everyone gives the boxes of photos to! I have many of those boxes and have been working my way through to sort and identify them. My parents are in their 80s, so this is something that needs to be done NOW. I will be spending some time on the 1000 Memories site today–and the app! Amazing! Thanks for the info!

  74. I have all of the photos from my past–it would be great to share with family.

  75. Michelle says:

    What a great website!

  76. I’ve been a photography nut since I got my first “real” camera as a high school graduation gift (many, many years ago). I have hundreds, maybe thousands of photos I’ve taken over the years sitting in boxes and sacks in my closet. I’d love to scan them all and have them organized and more accessible so my family can enjoy them!

  77. TerrieF says:

    Ok, this couldn’t be more apropos. My husband has requested a scrapbook of him for his 50th b-day (already past in Feb) that briefly chronicles his life decade by decade. I sat down with his mom to go over old photographs and tried to write copious notes of family members, relationships etc. I have a stack of photos of my husband as a child waiting to be scanned. They are still waiting. I’ve been overwhelmed by the process because I want to include the info she gave me on the photos once I’ve scanned them. I like the Shoebox idea because it means she can go in and add the info herself – and I know her well enough to know that she will do a bang-up job of it! What a time saver this could be for me….

  78. When I was 17, I spent the summer in Panama as an exchange student. When I got home, I compiled all the photos and artifacts into a scrapbook. As this was more than a few years ago, the pages (non-archival, of course) are falling apart and the photos are losing their color. I would love to be able to scan the photos of this once in a lifetime, definitely life-changing, experience.

  79. Marcie L says:

    I can’t even explain how this excites me! I love my LOM, but I’ve still got lots of old, vintage photos from my childhood, my parents childhoods, etc that would be perfect for this!
    Thanks for the chance to win,

  80. Wow! I would love to scan all of my oldest photos. I really wouldn’t even know where to start.

  81. Carol Amie says:

    It’s not the most creative response, but I would absolutely need to start by scanning the actual shoeboxes of photos that I currently have in my basement. I might actually sleep well at night knowing that they were immune to all of the worriers worst fears that threaten the memories daily now. And my laundry might get done faster, too, since I’m currently afraid to run the washer if I can’t be right there near it lest it have some freaking leaking incident that exposed precious and irreplaceable moments to moisture. My three kids don’t need clean clothes as much as they need to know what their great grandparents looked like anyway, right?

  82. Where to start….I think I’d go with the photos fom my childhood and my parent’s childhood. These photos are becoming more and more important to family as we have the cne to record the memoirs and everyday thoughts of that timeframe… Thanks or chance!

  83. That looks like a very cool app! I have boxes of photos hiding out in my closet that I need to scan. It would be cool to have my mom and aunt help out with the naming/details on photos! Thanks for sharing such cool finds!

  84. My sister and I have literally thousands of photos from our mother to scan in. She had to move into the nursing home after a stroke, and we have piles, boxes and hundreds of envelopes with photos from the late 1800s through today….a daunting task, but we want to be able to share them with our family now scattered across the country. This would be a fabulous prize!

  85. Kathy A. says:

    Oh my gosh – where to start? I still have so many photos stuffed in shoeboxes that I want to scan in and have digital access to plus the security of them being backed-up. Thank you so much for the chance to win!

  86. Dondalee Southern says:

    I would scan the pictures from when my children were growing up so we could all share the memories together. Wow, that looks like a great app.

    Thank you for the opportunity to win.

  87. KristiG says:

    I would scan my grandparents’ photos from their 63 years of marriage and family (and the few from their childhoods). They are currently in boxes and bags in my grandparents’ attic and they are giving my grandmother anxiety since they aren’t organized at all. I would get copies of the disks so all my aunts/uncles/cousins could have a copy and then I’d put all the photos in photo albums for my grandparents to actually look at and enjoy instead of stress over and ignore! Come to think of it….I really should do this regardless of whether or not I win!

  88. MCalvert says:

    I would love help scanning photos that I recieved from my Grandmother!!

  89. Paula Jo Nyman says:

    Thanks for this opportunity, Stacy! I have a whole box of my father’s slides from my parent’s early marriage. My father died when I was just 3 and I would love to have these images for myself and my Mom to enjoy!

  90. My mother passed away this fall. I traveled in December to help my Step Dad go through her things and was sent home with a large suitcase full of heritage photos. There are even photos of my Grand parents before they were married with them gone now they mean so much. I want to archive these the rght way so I can share them with my brothers.

  91. I have a gazillion pictures that span over 35-40 years! I’ve for the last couple of years, tried to get them all, dated, labeled. It is so much, I am almost overwhelmed at the task. I have pictures in paper form, digital on a two different computers and many digitials that are on SD cards and have not been downloaded. I really need help getting all of these organized in one place! “Hello, my name is Cindy and I am a disorganized photo keeper that totally needs help from the experts.”

  92. Heather C says:

    I need help with the literal shoeboxes of old photos that I inherited as the resident family record keeper. I have photo albums my mother kept as a young girl, her wedding album, and tons of pictures of my brothers, sister and I when we were growing up.

    I would love to win one of these kits to finally get all of these pictures digitized to share and collaborate . Thanks!

  93. I would love to scan some of the pictures from my childhood. There are so many stories to tell and comparisons to make of my children’s childhood. This is such and awesome chance. Thanks. Have a great Easter weekend.

  94. Kathy Thurman says:

    I have photos from both sides of the family that I have been wanting to get scanned for a long time. I really want to scrap a heritage album for the family but haven’t yet mainly because of how time consuming it is to scan on my own. I heard about ScanCafe from friends a while back and have been considering it and would love a chance to have it done.

  95. Laura K says:

    I love this idea – we have so many boxes of old family photos and no way to identify the people, places and events. This would be such a wonderful way to reach out to family and friends far away to not only give these photos meaning but help build relationships with extended family.

    Thanks for the chance to win! Loving this idea!

  96. Andrea C. in IL says:

    I have been working on scanning pictures for both families. My Mom doesn’t have a shoebox. She has a trunk, actually 2 trunks full of pictures. With this, she could upload and share them all with everyone. how wonderful that would be.

  97. DeeAnn Cummins says:

    I also have a big box of old family photos to scan! I love this idea of sharing them with the rest of the family and getting their imput. Thanks for the chance.

  98. Love this idea! I have lots of old family photos I’m working on scanning, but it’s taking a long time. I like the idea of posting the photos and having other family members help identify them. Thanks for the info!

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