Do You Have Old Yearbooks?


Would you like to find a new home for you old yearbooks?

Many people struggle with how many books are too many? It’s hard to get rid of all kinds of books. But these memories from you past can be extra difficult because they are filled with so many photos and thoughts from classmates. Often times you even have hand written messages from classmates inside the pages.

Many people struggle with yearbooks that they no longer need, but don’t want to throw away. Try contacting your old school. Many schools would like them for their historical records. Several years ago my Alma mater had a major renovation to the entire facility and one day I decided to stop by and walk through my old stomping grounds to see what was new. Part of the renovation incorporated built-in glass cabinets at hallway intersections. To my surprise, they had old yearbooks and other memorabilia highlighting the history of the school. It was really great to see memories from my time as a student, but also things from before and after my time.

Even if your school doesn’t do this I bet there is a section in the library (or whatever they call it these days – resource center, I think) that houses the history of the school through printed materials.

If that doesn’t work you can contact Classmate Yearbooks.

Every yearbook is a window into the past. Click To Tweet

They have books covering more than 30 million people. You can browse 90,000 yearbooks from over
200,000 high schools and look for pictures of old classmates, find photos for your family tree, even your favorite celebrities-all with your free membership. Register for free to browse hundreds of thousands of yearbooks!

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Janet Schiesl

Janet has been organizing since 2005. She is a Certified Professional Organizer and the owner of Basic Organization. She loves using her background as a space planner to challenge her clients to look at their space differently. She leads the team in large projects and works one-on-one with clients to help the process move quickly and comfortably. Call her crazy, but she loves to work with paper, to purge what is not needed and to create filing systems that work for each individual client. Janet is a Past President of the Washington DC Chapter of the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals (NAPO) and was voted 2016 Organizer of the Year by the Washington DC Chapter of NAPO.


  1. Hazel Thornton on October 5, 2020 at 8:18 am is another possible home for your yearbook.

  2. Ronni Eisenberg on October 5, 2020 at 8:56 am

    I don’t have my college yearbooks but I do have a few from high school. I love looking through them and when I get together with old high school friends, it’s fun to share all those memories. Each memory has a story. Each person has a “Do you remember?”, sometimes changing history in our minds.

    • Janet Schiesl on October 5, 2020 at 1:23 pm

      Ronni. I married my high school sweetheart so we have double yearbooks. He loves to reminisce about the old days and we usually don’t remember events the same way.

  3. Janet Barclay on October 5, 2020 at 10:13 am

    I can’t even imagine parting with my yearbooks. I was shocked when I got together with an old school friend a few years ago and she told me she’d thrown hers out because she “didn’t have room for them” at her place.

    • Janet Schiesl on October 5, 2020 at 1:36 pm

      Hi Janet. I’m ready to toss mine, but my husband won’t let me. We went to the same high school.

  4. Sabrina Quairoli on October 5, 2020 at 10:34 am

    Thanks, Janet! You always find the most wonderful places to donate items. I’m keeping this one for later. =)

    • Janet Schiesl on October 5, 2020 at 1:47 pm

      Thanks Sabrina. You should see my list of resources!

  5. Seana Turner on October 5, 2020 at 10:42 am

    I have a few upstairs, and I actually pull them out periodically to remember people. Definitely handy before a reunion. That said, they are generally pretty large and heavy, and if you are looking to let them go, these are terrific ideas!!

    • Janet Schiesl on October 5, 2020 at 1:49 pm

      When downsizing yearbooks are a challenge. You don’t look at them often, so there is probably other things that are more important, but they are so sentimental.

  6. Sheri Steed on October 5, 2020 at 2:01 pm

    Love your suggestion about using the yearbook website to find photos for your family tree. Brilliant!

  7. Lisa Tonjes Moritz on October 5, 2020 at 6:49 pm

    I can’t imagine getting rid of a yearbook unless I really don’t have the room. I have 13! Kindergarten through 12 Grade (same school in a small town) and then 4 Greek Yearbooks from college. I reference them at least once or twice a year to remember a name.

  8. Janet Schiesl on October 5, 2020 at 7:10 pm

    That’s so cool Lisa. I never had yearbooks from elementary school.

  9. Linda Samuels on October 5, 2020 at 7:15 pm

    I have a few junior high and high school yearbooks, but I’m glad to have them. The one time I went to my HS reunion, they provided me with a good refresher course. But if I ever do let them go, I like the advice you gave. Good to know.

  10. Lucy Kelly on October 6, 2020 at 3:42 pm

    I don’t have any yearbooks and to be honest, I don’t miss them – in England, it wasn’t something we did when I was in school. With my kids, I’ve noticed they never look at them and they’re very heavy and were super expensive :-). Still holding onto them though because I’m pretty sure as they get older, they’ll want to leaf through them.

    • Janet Schiesl on October 6, 2020 at 3:48 pm

      Lucy, I agree very heavy and expensive. I think there is a lot of pressure to purchase from the schools.

  11. Pam Auble on October 6, 2020 at 4:54 pm

    I never thought about getting rid of my yearbooks; I love the idea of returning them to your alma mater though. I love looking through old yearbooks and seeing what my college was like decades before I went there.

    • Janet Schiesl on October 7, 2020 at 9:06 am

      Pam, about 10 years ago my high school went through a major renovation and I went back to see what was done. They had added glass insets in the hallways where they displayed old yearbooks and other items from the schools history. It is really great.

  12. Liana George on October 7, 2020 at 5:17 pm

    Yearbooks are so hard to let go of! Thanks for offering some options other than just throwing them away or recycling them. Can’t wait to share these wonderful resources and ideas!

    • Janet Schiesl on October 8, 2020 at 7:57 am

      Thanks Liana. It’s always good to have options.

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