I recently received a cassette tape of an interview done by a distant family member with one of my husband's aunts in 2001. Both of those ladies have passed away and the tape became the possession of the interviewer's daughter. She doesn't have a tape recorder any longer and has a transcription so she was not interested in keeping the tape.
My husband's Aunt Ruby was a sweetheart and with his Aunt Marge, always made me feel as I was part of their family. We had made a quick visit with her about 8 months after the tape was made but it wasn't a happy time as I was in the area to bury my mother's cremains so it never occurred to me to tape what became our last visit with Aunt Ruby.
When the tape was offered to me I was happy to get it - I'd love to hear her voice again. Problem was, who has a tape recorder anymore?
Evidently, I do. When the tape arrived hubby emailed several friends and colleagues to see if anyone had one we could borrow. No one did. Then it hit me! Several years ago, pre bluetooth, we used to use a boom box in the backyard on our deck. Had to think hard what we did with it and then remembered it was outside in a pool storage bench. Thank goodness it still worked!
Hubby transferred the tape to MP3 using the instructions from this site - How to Transfer Old Cassette Tapes to MP3 Files
The quality is not great - it was made in a nursing home greeting area and a restaurant so there is a lot of background noise. I'm still glad we have it and updated it to the latest technology.
If you have tapes and would like to update it is not difficult to do. I recommend putting that on your winter to do list and with the holidays around the corner, you might want to ask to borrow from family and friends if you don't have a tape player.
It's going to be a constant upgrade from one technology to another but I think the time expended is well worth it. Your descendants will think it's awesome when they will see a picture of their 5th great grandparents and hear their voices!