Volunteer for #REPSserves15 on October 17, 2015

It’s that time of year again! New England Archivists and the NEA Roundtable for Early Professionals and Students (REPS) are excited to announce the 2nd Annual NEA/REPS Day of Services (#REPSserves15). As an opportunity for NEA members to give back to the archival community, volunteers will donate their time and professional expertise at five New England repositories in need of improving access to their collections.

On Saturday, October 17, 2015, volunteers will spend the day at The History Project: Documenting LGBTQ Boston (MA), the USS Constitution Museum (Charlestown, MA), the Worcester Refugee Archive (MA), the Colchester Historical Society (CT), and the Hardwick Historical Society (VT).

Sign up for the day of service!

The History Project: Documenting LGBTQ Boston

The History Project is a volunteer-driven organization focused on several important initiatives including preserving the documentary record of the LGBT community’s social and historical contributions. Established in 1980 by a group of historians, activists and archivists, the History Project is the only group focused exclusively on preserving the history of Boston’s LGBT community, and on making that history accessible to future generations. This research and preservation is of paramount importance for the LGBT community, which is often excluded from history. 

Volunteers will process The BAGLY (Boston Area Gay and Lesbian Youth) Collection, which consists of 14 record cartons.

USS Constitution Museum

USS Constitution is a private, non-profit museum with a very small staff that would appreciate the help. They also participated in the TourFest and opened up their archives for NEA and REPS members. The Samuel Eliot Morison Memorial Library at the USS Constitution Museum holds a strong collection of primary documents and secondary works related to USS Constitution. The Library’s resources are useful to historians, educators, and ship modelers, with limited genealogical information. The 2,000-volume library includes general maritime titles, local and federal period history, and books about USS Constitution, the US Navy, and the US Marine Corps.

Volunteers will help with the Institutional Archives backlog by processing several boxes of museum records.

Worcester Refugee Archive at Clark University

The Worcester Refugee Archive at Clark University’s Kasperson Research Library offers one of the most extensive research collections in North America on risks and hazards and global environmental change. In addition, the library collection includes holdings in technology, water and energy policy, and sustainability. Some 25,000 books, technical reports and government documents make up the current collection. These include records of 1,500 hearings and reports of the U.S. Congress, 600 reports of the U.S. General Accounting Office and more than 2,000 articles on development. The library also receives approximately 260 journals, newsletters and other periodicals.

The two biggest needs right now are A) item level descriptions in their WordPress “catablog” and B) orphan works research / documentation. The library has done some preliminary digitization and they’re seeking grants to further this work but right now they need help showing people what material is already there.

Colchester Historical Society

Founded in 1963, the mission of the Colchester Historical Society is to educate and enlighten the public to the history of Colchester, and to protect and preserve our architecture and memorabilia. It is the goal of the Colchester Historical Society to increase citizen and community awareness of the unique heritage of Colchester and the region. It is the goal of the Colchester Historical Society to increase citizen and community awareness of the unique heritage of Colchester and the region.

The Colchester Historical Society needs help vacating two rooms in their facility. Volunteers will 1) appraise and weed a collection of materials, and 2) inventory and rehouse a photograph collection.

Hardwick Historical Society

  • Address: 47 Depot Street, Hardwick, VT
  • REPS Coordinator: Casey Davis (casey_davis@wgbh.org)
  • Max volunteers per shift: 5
  • Shifts: 9-1 and 1-5 (or all day)
  • Other details: Our host, Dr. Elizabeth H. Dow (Casey’s archives professor from grad school), invites up to 4 volunteers who travel for the event to stay overnight at her house in Hardwick. Casey will take her car to Hardwick on the morning of October 17 and can bring 3 other people.

The Hardwick Historical Society is a small, all-volunteer run, collecting repository dedicated to preserving the history of the Village of Hardwick (1891-1989) and the Town of Hardwick, Vermont. Located in the restored Hardwick RR Depot, the Society collects and exhibits materials relating to the granite and railroad industry, Hardwick Academy, and the Civil War.

The Hardwick Historical Society has a collection of historical records, photographs, publications, ephemera, and materials culture that documents the history of the town and village. The archival collection totals roughly 150 cubic feet of paper-based materials, mostly letter- and legal-sized business documents and local newspapers. While the majority of the collection consists of business records from the granite industry and ancillary businesses that dominated the community’s economy during the first half of the 20th century, the number of other collections has grown remarkably in the past few years. All have been housed in archival quality boxes and folders. All have lists of the file labels of their contents, but most have not been properly arranged, and none has a proper finding aid.

Volunteers will process several small manuscript collections.

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