2016 Day of Service Wrap-up!

On Saturday, November 5th we hosted our third annual Day of Service. This year, we had three locations: The History Project (Boston, MA), The First Parish Church (Dorchester, MA), and New London Historical Society (New London, CT). Our 24 participants processed over 15 feet of materials during this time – amazing work!

Thanks to everyone who donated their time and expertise to these organizations. We pulled together some of our favorite images and tweets from this year’s event.

History Project – Boston, MA  @lgbtq_history

Back again for another year! This is the second time REPS has volunteered with the History Project. This year, we processed the collection “Gays For Patsy,” records from a gay square dancing group from 1984-2000s. Participants collaborated on creating a box list with brief descriptions.

First Parish Church – Dorchester, MA  @firstparishdot

The REPS crew removed over two dozen items from photo frames and packed and sorted about 7 cubic feet of materials.

New London Historical Society – New London, CT

This year, we were really excited to bring a REPS event to Connecticut. Thanks to former REPS Steering Committee member Rose Olivera for making this happen! Volunteers inventoried nearly six rooms of miscellaneous material for future processing.


REPS Fall Meet Up at the Squealing Pig in Boston – Saturday, September 12

Image Credit: Sue Hodnett, Flickr Commons

Fall is upon us. As we trickle back from summer fun and settle into new (and old) routines, let’s  meet up and say hello! Join us for our Fall Meet Up at the Squealing Pig from 1-3 p.m. The meet up immediately follows NEA’s Career Development for Early Career Professionals Workshop at Simmons College and is open to all REPS members (and those interested in joining). 

Come and meet other archivists and future colleagues over some beer and curly fries! It’s a great way to meet others in the field and broaden your network of colleagues and friends. We will include time for a short debrief from participants in the workshop to share key points for those who were unable to attend. The address is 134 Smith Street, Roxbury Crossing, MA 02120.  Please R.S.V.P. if you are interested in joining us.

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.

The REPS Guide to SAA 2015!

Panorama of Cleveland, Ohio, 1912. Image Credit: Library of Congress

The Society of American Archivists 2015 Annual Meeting is right around the corner! The meeting will be held in Cleveland, Ohio, this year, from August 16-22, and the theme is “Make the Connection”. Here is the REPS guide to resources and guides for those attending – or those watching at home.

Official Resources

The basics — where to go, how to get there, and how you should behave while you are there.

Advice for Attendees

Some recurrent themes, which REPS also endorses: Stay hydrated! Wear some comfortable shoes! Bring charging cables and/or a power strip! Talk to (archivist) strangers! Bring your resume and business cards! And have a good time!

Special Events

Besides the educational sessions, there are lots of interesting things to get involved in over the course of the meeting.

Getting Involved

Even if you aren’t presenting, there are many ways to interact with people during the conference.

REPS Blog Posts

A little advice from REPS …

Other Tips on Conference-Going

… and from others.

REPS TourFest 2015: Group One Guide

We are doing a series of posts about the institutions we’ll be visiting during TourFest 2015 on May 16! First up is the Massachusetts Historical Society and the New England Historic Genealogical Society and American Jewish Historical Society. Register here now!

One of the many pieces you will see on exhibit at MHS. Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons.
One of the many pieces you will see on exhibit at MHS! Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

Massachusetts Historical Society

The Massachusetts Historical Society (MHS) has operated as an independent research library since 1791, providing researchers with access to extraordinary collections documenting the history of American life and culture. MHS is the nation’s first historical society and maintains, preserves, and provides access to extensive collections including the personal papers of John Adams, John Quincy Adams, and Thomas Jefferson. At the tour, REPS and NEA members will learn about the history of the MHS and its art collections and will have the opportunity to explore the current exhibition God Save the People!: From the Stamp Act to Bunker Hill. A reference librarian will share behind-the-scenes information about how staff at MHS are actively managing and preserving their collections, as well as serving the needs of researchers who visit the repository both physically and virtually, through exhibitions, lectures, tours, seminars, and workshops.


New England Historic Genealogical Society and American Jewish Historical Society

Attendees in Group 1 will get a 2 for 1 afternoon tour at TourFest 2015! The Wyner Center for the American Jewish Historical Society (AJHS), which functions as the New England regional headquarters of AJHS, the nation’s oldest ethnic historical organization. The AJHS-New England Archives serve as the archival repository for the documentary record of Jewish Life in Great Boston and New England. Genealogists at AJHS-New England Archives provide families with reference and research assistance in exploring and learning about their family histories and genealogy. The AJHS-New England Archives’ holding including personal papers, organizational records, photographs, reports and other materials for researching the Jewish community and its history in Boston.

AJHS-New England Archives is situated within the New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS), which will be the second stop on this 2 for 1 tour. The NEHGS was founded in 1845 as America’s leading resource for research of family history. The staff at NEHGS provide research services for nearly all aspects of family history, from 17th century colonial New England through 21st century immigration research.

Participants will receive a tour of the whole building, including both archives, and staff will talk about their strategic partnership and what that means for collaboration on some projects, including the digital curation workstation, the digital archives, and an upcoming exhibit on World War I. Staff also plan to showcase some items from their favorite collections and will hopefully have some time at the end for participants to make buttons (using images from the collections.)

Register now for REPS TourFest 2015!

Image Credit: Internet Archive
Image Credit: Internet Archive

REPS members and REPS advocates are all invited to join the first annual TourFest 2015!

Spend Saturday May 16th with REPS and NEA getting behind-the-scene tours of some of Boston’s most interesting archival repositories. TourFest 2015, organized by the NEA Roundtable for Early Professional and Students (REPS), starts the day off with everyone going on two in-depth, behind-the-scenes repository tours. We’ll end the day by meeting in Davis Square for Somerville’s PorchFest: where musicians and bands throughout Somerville play music for the community from their front porches. This informal event is perfect for anyone who wants to hear a wide sampling of local music or anyone who just wants to stroll the neighborhood with friends.

Tweet about the event with the hashtag #TourFest15!

Register for TourFest 2015!

GROUP 1 — REPS Coordinator: Casey Davis | Max capacity: 15
10am: Massachusetts Historical Society
2pm: American Jewish Historical Society-New England Archives and New England Historic Genealogical Society

Read the guide for these tours!

GROUP 2 — REPS Coordinator: Rose Oliveira | Max Capacity: 12

NOTE: Currently full, but add yourself to the waitlist!

10am: Converse Archives
2pm: USS Constitution Museum and Archives

Read the guide for these tours!

GROUP 3 — REPS Coordinator: Chris Markman | Max Capacity: 10
10am: Bostonian Society
2pm: Boston Symphony Orchestra Archives

Read the guide for these tours!

ALL GROUPS + anyone else!
4pm: Somerville Porch Festival

Learn more about the Somerville Porch Fest!

Coordinators will send out emails before the event with more information about the tours. Everyone is invited to join us at PorchFest. We’ll meet at Davis Square Park (near the T station) at 4pm. Contact Casey Davis for more information.

The REPS Guide to the MARAC/NEA Spring 2015 Meeting

Image Credit: The Scottish Rite Masonic Museum and Library
Image Credit: The Scottish Rite Masonic Museum and Library

The MARAC/NEA Spring 2015 Meeting, “The Revolution Continues”, is happening in one week — March 19-21! Registration is closed now, but we hope we will see you there! You can get information about the hotel and directions here. Due to high attendance rates, sessions are expected to be quite full, so it’s a good idea to plan out your schedule now and show up at your sessions early. Check out the PDF of the full schedule now. You’ll also find a map of hotel locations in it.

The meeting is being held at the historic Boston Park Plaza Hotel, which opened in 1927 as the Statler Hotel. The Boston Globe recently ran an article about the Plaza and the extensive renovations it is undergoing; it seems like the lobby may be under construction during the meeting so be prepared to look out for signage!

If this is your first NEA meeting or you’re experiencing a little pre-conference anxiety (it happens to us all), check out REPS Student Liason Rose Oliveira’s excellent blog post on making the most out of your first conference. You can do it!

REPS Events

Join Us!

Representatives from REPS will be present at the Call to Action event on Friday, March 20 at 8 am.

  • The REPS Annual Meeting will be held on Friday, March 20th at 3:30 PM.
  • REPS is hosting a session on Saturday, March 21 at 11 am, entitled “Revolt Against Complacency: Combatting Hurdles in Professionalism”.
  • And finally, REPS, QueerNEA! and MARAC’s Early Professionals and Students (EPS) are hosting a NEA/MARAC post-meeting meet-up at Scollay Square on Saturday, March 21 at 4 pm. Currently all spots for this are filled but please email Casey Davis at casey_davis@wgbh.org to be placed on a waiting list.

Follow Along on Social Media!

Whether you are going to be in attendance at the meeting or not, you can follow along with the events on Twitter by using the hashtag #maracnea15. You should also following the twitter account for the conference, @maracnea15.

You can also contribute on Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram!

Things to Do at the Meeting and around Boston

MARAC has been posting a fantastically useful blog posts about the Meeting and things to do in Boston. You can find them all via this handy guide. Topics covered include lunchtime discussions at the meeting, plenary speakers Danna Bell and Sands Fish, the Day of Service, and local attractions, dining spots, running tips, and how to deal with the (thankfully, rapidly melting) snow.

And there’s more!

Finally, at the NEA Annual Business Meeting we will be voting on three proposed amendments to the NEA By-Laws. You can read up on them before voting here.

A Look at REPS in 2015!

Hello REPSers! It’s been a brutal and long winter so far, but spring is around the corner and REPS has a lot of exciting plans in the works for the coming year!

SCoSAA/REPS Audiovisual Archives Workshop

On Tuesday, March 3 Casey Davis and Rebecca Fraimow will be doing a workshop at Simmons College on preservation and access of analog video formats. The workshop will be livestreamed; read more about it here.

NEA/MARAC Spring Meeting – March 19-21, Boston MA

The NEA/MARAC Spring Meeting is a mere month away. There will be several events for REPS members at the meeting:

  • Join other REPS members for a pre-conference meeting on Monday, March 9 at 5:30 PM! Details here.
  • Representatives from REPS will be present at the Call to Action event on Friday, March 20th at 8 am.
  • The REPS Annual Meeting will be held on Friday, March 20th at 3:30 PM.
  • REPS is hosting a session on Saturday, March 21 at 11 am, entitled “Revolt Against Complacency: Combatting Hurdles in Professionalism”.
  • And finally, REPS, QueerNEA! and MARAC’s EPS roundtable are hosting a NEA/MARAC post-meeting meet-up at Scollay Square on Saturday, March 21 at 4 pm. Currently all spots for this are filled but please email Casey Davis to be placed on a waiting list.

The REPS guide to the the Spring Meeting is forthcoming!

Blog with REPS!

The REPS Blog will resume posting this month after a bit of a hiatus. Interested in contributing something? You could review an archives-related book, tell us about a repository you’re familiar with or a collection or exhibit you are working on, share some insight you’ve gained into the profession, or suggest something completely different — we are pretty open to ideas! Check out our submission guidelines and get in touch with us!

Repository Tour Day

REPS is in the process of planning a new exciting event for our members. On May 16, we’ll be touring a group of diverse repositories, including the Converse archives! We also plan to visit the Somerville Porchfest at the end of our day. Stay tuned for an official announcement with more information soon.

Day of Service

Our Back to School Day of Service event last year was a great success and we are excited to try to improve on it even more. If you missed out last time or want to participate again, check back this summer for more information!

Skill Shares

We’ll be making an announcement about these at the Spring Meeting, but if you have a particular skill in an area and are interested in sharing your knowledge with new archivists, please contact Dan Bullman for more information.

NEA REPS and ScoSAA present: Audio/Visual Workshop, Tuesday, March 3rd from 6-8pm

Have you ever wondered how archivists deal with preserving and providing access to analog video formats? Join SCoSAA and NEA REPS for a workshop about audio/visual archives. Rebecca Fraimow, the National Digital Stewardship Resident at WGBH-Boston, and Casey Davis, Project Manager for the American Archive of Public Broadcasting at WGBH-Boston and Co-Chair of NEA REPS, will take us from identification and assessment to metadata and beyond.

Tickets are now sold out but the workshop will be live cast here. Please remember to mute your mikes! You can also follow along on Twitter with the hashtag #scosaav.

This workshop will also be upload on the Simmons YouTube channel. We will send out a link when it has been uploaded!

Tour a Newport Mansion with REPS!

If you’re attending NEA Fall Symposium in Newport next weekend, consider coming along with REPS to tour Chateau-sur-Mer, a 19th century mansion near Salve Regina University.

Location: 474 Bellevue Ave., Newport, RI (we’ll be meeting in the parking lot)

Time: Saturday November 1, 10 AM

Purchase a ticket for the tour. Get the “One Property” ticket, unless you want to tour other mansions on your own over the weekend – in that case, there are some other options. These tickets have no expiration date and can be used at any time, so if for some reason you can’t make it on that day, you can use it any of the applicable mansions another time.

Contact Annalisa Moretti if you’re interested in going!