Have you ever had the experience of looking at your photos in the Historian/MM4 Media Library, and finding them all apparently out of order? Perhaps this tip might explain why. Historian always sorts your images, it’s just a matter of understanding what order they are sorted in.

On the View Ribbon, there is a section labelled “Sort”.



The Sort section gives you the option to sort your photos by 4 different criteria:

  • Name: Choosing name sorts the images by the file name of the images. They will sort in alphabetical order.
  • Ratings: If you have star rated your photos (here’s a LINK to a tip about that) you can choose to sort the images by the number of stars allocated.
  • Media Date: Media Date is the date on which the photo was taken.
  • Import Date: Historian records the date and time that you imported your images, and you can choose to display them in that order.

Once you have selected the criterion, you can choose whether to sort in ascending or descending order within that category. For example if you chose Ratings and Increasing, you would see the unstarred photos first, then those with 1 star, followed by 2 stars etc.

Within each category, you can choose whether to sort in ascending or descending order.




A to Z

Z to A


1 to 5 stars

5 stars to 1

Media Date

Earliest to latest

Latest to earliest

Import date

Earliest to latest

Latest to earliest

Whichever sort method is selected, Historian will remember the setting and use that setting – EXCEPT after importing new images. After an import the view automatically sorts by Import Date. This makes sense, because you usually want to see the recently imported images after importing them. However, the whole Memory Vault will now be sorted on Import Date, which might be confusing when you are looking in your Media Library. If your images seem to be out of order, click on the View Ribbon and check which Sort option is selected.

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20 Responses to Historian Tip: Sort Options

  1. marj.lancaster says:

    I am not sure if I am at the right place. I had Creative Memory and just about all that you could get. was totally on board and thenit crashed and then went to Historian but right now my question is how do I download pictures from facebook. Can anyone give me a step by step (for a dummy) on how to do this. I recently retired and am trying to get my pictures in order but this is a stumbling block for me . Can anyone help me??

  2. Christina Aeschleman says:

    I am completely overwhelmed by my memory vault. After a couple of “restarts” and “redoes” , my memory vault is a mess of folder dates, import dates, and categories. And I am sure TONS of duplicate photos. I don’t even know how to make sense of it all. Is there anyway to have all the photos just go back to being unsorted and I can start over? Or do you have a better suggestion? Thanks for your help.

    • Shelley says:

      You certainly can Christine. You can delete any of the tags or categories. The “folders” will disappear but the photos will be safe, and will appear in the Not Tagged section of your Memory Vault. Here’s a tip about deleting tags. But it may be better to just resort a category at a time rather than trying to do the whole MV at once. First you need to watch this video on the timeline, and then get rid of ALL your time based categories or tags. That should help right off. Then this video about Tags and Categories should give you some good ideas.

  3. carolyn18 carolyn18 says:

    This question does not necessarily go with this topic, I just put it in with the most recent S2S topic.

    I have been using your advice to reorganize my memory vault and have made good progress. I am very excited! It is so cool and opens up the door for so many new ideas for albums. (I used to organize my vault by date which I knew was not taking advantage of memory manager capabilities.)

    Now, I would like to use the My Albums feature in MM4; I have never used it before. I searched but could not find anything recent on how to use this feature. Would you tell me what I should look at? Is it another way to sort photos or does it help plan pages? I want to know which photos are going to go on which page-what is the best way to do this? I do use the star ratings to help but I want to know/see which photos are going on each page before I start scrapping each page.

    Thank you so much for all your ideas and help with so many aspects of scrapping!!

  4. Ellen Hathaway says:

    Hi Shelley
    I’m having trouble arranging the categories themselves. I used to be able to sort them so the most commonly used categories (e.g., “family”, “holidays”) were at the top. Now they’re all in alphabetical and I can’t seem to move them. Didn’t notice this when I upgraded to 4.0, but maybe I wasn’t paying attention. Is there any way to move the categories up or down in the list?

    • Shelley says:

      Ellen, you should be able to just click and drag the categories in whichever order you want them. Sorting alphabetically is an option, but not automatic. Have you watched this video, perhaps there’s something there that might help.

  5. Always learning something new from you Shelley! I would usually go to the time scale at the bottom and click import or media depending on what I wanted. This offers more options! Thank you!

  6. JANNA ROHRIG says:

    I am still using MM3… Do you think I should upgrade to 4 while I can?

  7. Beachbum says:

    Love this…I will look at it today and apply … thanks Shelley and all the Pixies!

  8. PixiePage says:

    Great tip. I was not aware of all these options

  9. inekeloux says:

    Helpful, must admit I have spent much more time learning SBC 4.0 (& thoroughly loving it!) than I have MM 4.0, and unfortunately I switched to MM 4.0 when my laptop stopped working and I was in the middle of a big project with a deadline . . . so it was just different enough from MM 3.0 that I had a time finding what I wanted. This meant my first impressions were not the best. And I find myself dragging my feet as I am now trying to get other projects done before Sept 23. All that said, certainly appreciated your sort tip.

    • Shelley says:

      MM4 is quite different in many ways to MM3 – but it has so many very nice new features! Once you get thoise projects completed, it is worth getting to know MM4 as well. We will try to help one tip at a time!

  10. Deanna Emmert says:

    Now THIS answers a whole bunch of questions!! Thank you, Shelley!!! 🙂

  11. Tara Wells says:

    And just like that, Shelley, you introduced a powerful tool that is so obviously placed in MM, I never even noticed it! So clearly and simply explained. Thank you!

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