Using a Snipping Tool

We often want to capture not the whole screen but just a part of it.  For example when you find an ancestor’s birth or marriage or death announcement in a newspaper, you just want to cut out that small piece of the page.  Similarly you find an obituary, but only want to clip part of the page.  Also when you find a Probate entry in an index – they are great to clip. Finally you often want to clip out just part of the page in a Census.

All of the clipping programs are simple to use. You click on the top left of the section you want to capture and then drag to the lower right and let go – you get a simulated camera shutter – remember when we used to have those?

This is easy when you are set up to do it!  Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10 and Mac OS all have built in clipping tools.  Sometimes Windows “hides” it on us and we have to move it to where  we have easy access.  Instructions for using Snipping Tool are pretty much the same for all 3 versions of Windows – so just click on the link in the section below for Windows 7.

1.  Using Snipping Tool with Windows 7

Here is the link to the information on how to use the snipping tool – these instructions are good for all versions of Windows:

But . . .   it’s not on the Start Menu on my Win 7 computer!  Answer:  It’s hiding and you need to find it and pin it to the start menu.  Where’s it hiding?  Click on the Start Menu then select All Programs and look for the Accessories folder – it’s not near the top of the list! – open the Accessories folder, locale the Snipping Tool, right click on the icon and select Pin to Start Menu – or pick whatever option you like

2. Using Snipping Tool with Windows 8   

The Snipping tool should already be on the Start menu –  if not then use the above link and on the right of the screen next to the the words Windows 7 is a down arrow, click on it and select Windows 8 to get the Windows 8 version of the instructions – you just need to locate and move it to where you want it to be

3. Using Snipping Tool with WIndows 10

Again it might be under the Start button – but it wasn’t on my Win10 laptop – you need to find it and put it where you want it.  Click on the Start button and type Snipping in the search box.  The Snipping Tool will appear at the top of the list – don’t rush to click on it! – right click on it and Pin it   to the Taskbar – now it appears in the tray across the bottom of the screen.  Looks like the same application as in previous versions of Windows – although I hear it has some added features – so you can use the link to the how to use instructions for Windows 7 to get you started.

4.  Using a snipping tool with Mac – press the Command, and Shift keys and also the 4 – yes, all three at once! – and a small cross hair appears on the screen – use your mouse or trackpad to position the cross hair on the top left corner of what you want to clip then hold down the left button and drag to the lower right and let go.

Great tool – have fun – if you mess up then just do it again!  Practice does make a difference.

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