Update: Tropy – A New App that Helps Create Order out of Research Disorder

This is an update to an article I published yesterday that adds a bit more information about the product. Tropy is program that provides a method of organizing the photographs and scanned images you take of various documents encountered during your family history research.

Tropy is a FREE, open-source desktop application for Windows, Macintosh, and Linux that is designed to help researchers organize and describe the photos and scanned images they make in archives and elsewhere. The program will group photos, annotate images, add metadata, export to other applications, and easily search their collections.

On the downside, Tropy only allows researchers to import photos as JPEGs, PNGs, and SVGs. It does not import PDF files.

I haven’t had a chance to use this program yet but it sounds like a great software tool. You can find a number of online articles by other authors on various web sites that describe it by starting at: https://duckduckgo.com/?q=tropy+%22research+photos%22&t=hh&ia=software. I was impressed by the review at http://www.softpedia.com/get/Office-tools/Diary-Organizers-Calendar/Tropy.shtml.

The Tropy software for Windows, Macintosh, and Linux and detailed documentation may be found on Tropy.org.


Another thing to note. Tropy does not make copies of the images you move into it, nor does it keep track if you move them. For example, if you have a bunch of document photos in Apple’s iPhoto you’ll need to export them to put them into Tropy. If you delete these ‘temporary’ copies once you’ve put them into Tropy, they will disappear as far as Tropy is concerned. It keeps only thumbnail copies in its database. If you want to have images both in iPhoto and Tropy the least-painful way will be to have two copies of each image you want in both. Not a show-stopper in all cases, but something to keep in mind.


I have download this and have been testing it with various “projects”. I have found it useful to categorize newspaper articles. This will help me tell a persons story by what I have found in various newspaper sources. With the ability to use tags I can tag by date and by location. Very useful. I also think it is a great tool for transcribing documents for which I have used genscriber. While I will continue to use genscriber to transcribe censuses since it is good for using cvs templates I believe I will use Tropy to transcribe any other documents.


Great article. Downloaded the Linux version. Thanks


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