Organizing My MOTHER EARTH NEWS Issues

Here's a solution for those folks who want to locate articles in past magazine issues.
By Steven May
June/July 2001


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Here's a solution for those folks who are trying to find an article in the magazine they read years ago: I've developed a homemade index, updated on a yearly basis. I read each issue from cover to cover and highlight the words that define each article. At the end of the year, I go through every magazine and jot those words down along with the issue number and the page where the word is located. Then, I organize the listings under headings such as Alternative Building/ General Construction, Pest Control, Country Lore, Home Remedies/Health, etc.

Example:
Alternative Building/General Construction
SUBJECT                               ISSUE/PAGE
Cabin, hideaway (feature)        #181/30   
Concrete and cement               # 180/51
Cordwood construction           # 179/8

At present I do this by hand, but I'm sure that it could be done with a computer in a fraction of the time. When the index is complete, it goes into a transparent project folder, which is kept, along with the issues, in a magazine storage box. Last, I mark the box with the dates and numbers of the issues.

When I finally purchase a computer I will combine all the indices into one and store it on a disk, which will make my system far more convenient and efficient.

Steven May
Elmira, New York








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