Everyone is nostalgic for the past. The increasing popularity of retro fashions, music from decades ago, and movies based on old television shows speaks to this truism. Perhaps the best way of revisiting the halcyon days of your youth is paging through a treasured old copy of your high school or middle school yearbook.
However, life can bring unexpected twists. If a house fire, flood, theft, or any other of the type of property damaging tragedies that can befall anyone has robbed you of your old yearbooks, what can you do? Don’t worry too much. Can you find school yearbooks online? Chances are, you can.
The Internet is the ultimate resource. Use it wisely, and you’ll be back to pouring over those old photos of you and your friends preserved at your teenaged best in no time. You can replace your old high school yearbooks online. Here’s how.
- Contact your school
- Find Digital copies
- Buy used copies from individuals
- Buy used copies from websites
- Contact your school
Most high schools (and even some middle schools) these days maintain an online presence these days. Chances are, your school has a website. Do a Google search for the name of your school to see if you can find it. Once you do, look for a way to contact the school’s alumni association or the school’s library and request a copy of your yearbook.
If they don’t have copies for sale, ask if there are copies for loan in the school library. Then, you should be able to copy, scan, or even just take some digital photographs of the pages most important to you.
If you live in a different city or state than your high school, you may need to make arrangements to have the old yearbook shipped to you. Whether or not they will have the capabilities to do this probably depends on the resources available to your school, so you may want to have an old hometown friend pick up your copy.
Regardless of how you have it shipped to you, finding your school’s website is a quick and easy way to find old and current copies of school yearbooks online. It’s also a fun opportunity to see how your school has changed over the years. Take a moment to click around, look for your favorite teachers, and see if the cafeteria has a new paint job.
Find Digital Copies
Many schools will even offer scanned PDF copies of old yearbooks, if you’re just interested in having the photos and don’t really care so much about the physical book. Plus, this would be a great way of getting access to your old school yearbooks online for free (or, to backup your existing copy in case of future disasters).
If you’re an avid user of social networking sites such as Facebook, you may want to look for an alumni group for your school. Check the photos section of the group page to see if anyone has scanned in old yearbook pages or photos for your class. This is another great way to replace your old school yearbooks online.
Some class reunion websites, such as Alumniclass.com or Classmates.com, will have digital copies of old yearbooks as well, but these sites usually require you to register your email address with them. And, as anyone who has ever registered their email address anywhere knows, this means you’ll be getting an influx of spam email. If you don’t mind receiving some extra junk mail in your inbox, this is also something you may want to try.
Buy school yearbooks from individuals
Whenever you’re looking for something for sale that isn’t mass-produced, it’s always a good idea to check for used copies on auction websites such as eBay. These sites allow individuals to put objects up for sale. If you’ve never used eBay before, think of it as the world’s largest online yard sale.
Depending on the size of your class, there may be copies of your yearbook available there. I was able to find several copies from my high school, from the 1960s to the 1990s, all priced at around 50 dollars, with some as low at 10 dollars.
EBay is an auction site, so you’ll have to place a bid on the book you want to buy. Sometimes, however, sellers on eBay will also list a “buy it now” price. Look for those and you won’t have to worry about the hassle of bidding.
Another way to find school yearbooks online from individuals is to again check social networking sites such as Facebook. There are many alumni groups on Facebook, and if there are no digital copies of your yearbook posted there, ask group members themselves if they have an old copy they’d be willing to part with.
Buy Used Copies From Websites
There are a few websites that specialize in the sale of used school yearbooks. For instance, the website Old-yearbooks.com allows you to browse by state and school. The selection here is slightly limited, but it’s definitely worth a shot.
Old-yearbooks.com also has high school class rosters, alumni lists, photographs, and graduation programs dating back to the early part of the 20th century. If you’re not just looking for school yearbooks online but doing genealogical or biographical research, then this might be a good resource for you.
The popular genealogy website Ancestry.com also maintains a database of scanned yearbooks, with more being added every day. Ancestry.com is a members-only site, but does offer a free 14-day trial membership. So, you can sign up for the trial to see if the yearbook you’re looking for is available.
High School Yearbooks Online
Finding high school yearbooks online can be tricky, and might require some degree of sleuthing on your part. However, don’t give up, as it can be done. Check with your school, check eBay and Facebook, and check genealogy websites. Eventually, you should be able to find your old school yearbook online, and hang on to those treasured memories of your school days.