I Found It In the Archives!

Each year with its I Found It In the Archives! contest, the Society of American Archivists encourages people to not just use archival collections but to share their stories of doing so. The winner gets to attend the SAA annual meeting, which this year is being held in San Diego.

I’ve never submitted an entry, but goodness knows, I have certainly been helped by many different types of collections, from family histories to business records to city directories, voter registrations, yearbooks, school records, and historical newspapers and photos—located in public libraries, genealogical libraries, academic libraries, archives, and historical societies.

Entries are no longer being accepted for the 2012 competition, but voting for the national winner is currently underway. You can view the finalists here and cast your vote for which one should win.


2 thoughts on “I Found It In the Archives!

  1. Thanks for posting this Nel! I think this is a great idea for a contest for not only inspiring people to use the archives but to then share those stories and perhaps inspire others to take a look in their local archive.

    Even though the 2012 competition is over I thought it would be fun to share one of my own archive stories and maybe get others from the group or from class to share their archive stories. I recently was at the Seattle Symphony and had the opportunity to assist with locating some items for the 50th Anniversary of the World’s Fair in Seattle. The World’s Fair was a big deal for the Seattle Symphony because they were very much part of the celebration as they held performances under the baton of renowned composer and conductor Igor Stravinsky at the Opera House on the Seattle Center grounds.

    The item that most impressed me (probably because I am such an orchestra geek) was a copy of a letter written by the then Seattle Symphony conductor, Milton Katims, to the future music director of the symphony in the year 2012. The original version of this letter was place in a time capsule buried during the World’s Fair in 1962. What a wonderful thing to read (again this can probably be attributed to my inner orchestra geek and perhaps historian)! Maybe a letter is not exciting to everyone but I sure had a great time finding it in the archive.

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