This spring, several students from the University of Wisconsin did a “Preservation Review” of our Collections. It was a learning experience for them, and an opportunity to review our archival procedures. After receiving their report in May we have been working in our basement storage area of the Fitchburg Public Library to make sure that items stored there are in archival quality containers, and that items close to the floor are in waterproof containers in the event of water damage.
Other suggestions are in the process of being implemented including the backup of our Collection Records and organizational documentation in multiple secure places. Our mini grant will provide the funds for an external hard drive to assist in this process.
Our Photographic Collection has undergone a real transformation this past year, and will continue to be emphasized as we implement our digitization process, another facet of the Preservation Review. The Obituary area receives constant updates and a list of available obituaries is on our Website. In addition, various articles are added regularly to our paper files, and a careful digital and paper inventory is kept of all our Collections.
Many hours have been put into updating the archives, and the report from the U.W. students was both useful and encouraging.