I think it is time for a quick review on saving images and records and using the shoebox. I’ve seen some questions on where the shoebox is located and if you can save images to specific places on your computer or to a DVD. So let’s review the saving methods on Ancestry.com.
Question: What is the Shoebox? Where do I find my Shoebox? How do I use it?
Answer: The Shoebox is a place to save links to records that are interesting to you. Sometimes you find a record that might be the right one, but you want more time to evaluate it before you decide to attach it to a tree. You can save a link to the record in your Shoebox and come back to it later. Please note that you don’t actually save copies of the documents, you save links to the documents on Ancestry.com. If you want to save copies of the actual documents, follow the steps described in the questions below.
As shown in the example below, the Shoebox is located near the bottom of the Ancestry.com home page. If you have customized your homepage, your Shoebox might be somewhere else on the page, or you may need to add it back. To add the Shoebox or to change its location on the home page, click the “Customize your homepage” link on the top right side of the home page.
Full information about the Shoebox is available in the support topics area of the Learning Center, which can be found in the navigation bar on the top of the Ancestry.com home or search pages.
Question: Where is the save button on a record? For a record page, what are the saving options? Can I save a record to my desktop?
Answer: The record page is displayed when you click on a search result. It contains a summary transcription of some key fields from the actual record. From the record page, there are 2 ways to save a link to the record:
- Click on a link in the “Page Tools” on the left side of the record page.
- Click on the large orange “Save” button located below the record details to display a pop-up containing the available options.
You can save a link to the record page to your tree or to your Shoebox. However, the record page cannot be saved to your computer. Instead, you can save the actual image by following the steps in the next question.
Question: Can I specify where I want to save an image? Can I save an image to my computer if I don’t use genealogy software? Can I save an image to my computer after I saved a link to it in my Shoebox?
Answer: You can save an image to your family tree, your computer, your Shoebox, or to all of these locations. An image can be saved to your computer multiple times. You don’t need genealogy software to save an image or use it in a document, but if you have a genealogy program, you may be able to import the images you save from Ancestry into it.
When you are viewing an image, the Save button is located in the top right corner of the enhanced image page as shown:
When you click “Save”, you will see a pop-up showing all the available Save options.
Once you have saved an image, the area at the top of the image page will be updated to reflect your actions. In the example below, I saved a link to the Laura Brett image to my Shoebox and to my family tree.
When you save an image to your computer, you can save it to your hard drive, thumb drive, or removable disk. If you have a special folder on your computer where you save all the images you have in your genealogy software, you can save the image directly to that location.
Saving images and attaching links to records is a good practice to help you fill out the details about your ancestors’ lives. I find that going back to images that I looked at in the past gives me new clues when I change my search focus. For example, I knew my grandfather was a chauffeur early in his career, but I didn’t know why he moved across the country. His draft record stated his employment information in New Jersey. By reexamining his employer’s name on his draft record and searching for his employer’s family, I found a reason why he moved from New Jersey to Michigan.
Good luck with all of your searches!
Specific questions about errors or technical problems will be answered more quickly if you email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Customer Support Center. Our phone number is available on the bottom of the homepage and on our Contact Ancestry.com Support page.