Archival Adventures in Small Repositories

The goal of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's "Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories" (HCI-PSAR) is to make better known and more accessible the largely hidden collections at small archival repositories in the five-county Philadelphia region. These include volunteer-run historical institutions, museums, fraternal and ethnic organizations, community groups, churches, clubs, and other non-profit organizations with important archival collections. The project is funded by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. This blog will document the adventures and experiences of Project Surveyors as they visit historical societies, museums, historic sites, and other small archival repositories in the five-county Philadelphia area.

 

 

12/17/14
Author: Sarah Leu

The Historical Society of Pennsylvania will be closed all of next week in observance of the Christmas holiday. That's why we wanted to take this time to wish all of you a wonderful holiday season. As we have often done in the past at this time of year, featured below are some of the Christmas inspired images we've seen in the archives of small repositories. Enjoy!

Comments: 0
12/10/14
Author: Celia Caust-Ellenbogen

Elwyn was one of the first American schools for children with intellectual disabilities, founded in 1852 as the Pennsylvania Training School for Idiotic and Feeble-Minded Children. Established in the midst of changing social and scientific trends in the understanding and treatment of intellectual disability, Elwyn has remained consistently at the vanguard of this field -- usually for the better, but occassionally with regrets -- for over 150 years.

Comments: 0
12/3/14
Author: Celia Caust-Ellenbogen

The internet loves cute animals. Archivists do, too. So although there are many fabulous archival collections at the Philadelphia History Museum that I considered for the subject of this blog post, it seems almost inevitable that I settled on the Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals collection.

Comments: 0
11/25/14
Author: Celia Caust-Ellenbogen

This Thanksgiving we are grateful to the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, for funding the HCI-PSAR Project another 18 months through April 2016, to the over 130 small repositories who have been so hospitable in welcoming us into their archives over the past three years, and to everyone who is interested in our project and follows this blog. Happy Turkey Day, everyone!

Comments: 0
11/17/14
Author: Sarah Leu

Friends’ Central School is a co-educational, Quaker, private school for children in nursery school through 12th grade. The school was established in 1845 in Philadelphia and originally located at 4th and Cherry streets. It earned its name of Friends’ Central because its student body was comprised of the students of three different Quaker elementary schools who attended the “central” school for secondary education.

Topics: Education
Comments: 0
11/11/14
Author: Celia Caust-Ellenbogen

Today, Veterans Day, we honor the individuals who have served in the Armed Forces. Pennsylvanians have contributed selflessly to many military conflicts over United States history, and time and again, my co-surveyors and I have come across their stories in small repositories' collections throughout the Philadelphia area.

Comments: 0
10/27/14
Author: Celia Caust-Ellenbogen

National History Day (NHD) is a great program to help students in grades 6-12 practice research and critical thinking skills, elements important to their future in the workplace and school. For students and teachers particularly interested in local history, or who live far from HSP and want to find primary-source documents close to home, a small repository may be a good place to do research.

Comments: 0
10/22/14
Author: Sarah Leu

Several months ago, we surveyed at the African American Museum in Philadelphia (AAMP), which was founded in 1976 during the bicentennial celebration of the United States.

Comments: 0
10/13/14
Author: Sarah Leu

Earlier this month, the HCI-PSAR team held a symposium at the Mercer Museum in Doylestown (Bucks County, Pennsylvania). Focused on the Bucks County repositories that have participated in our project, the symposium provided an overview of where our project is now, described what's ahead for HCI-PSAR, looked at our project's findings from the 23 Bucks County repositories we surveyed, and also explored various possible next steps for repositories to take now that they have received our report.

Comments: 0
10/5/14
Author: Sarah Leu

We are very excited to announce that the Historical Society of Pennsylvania has been awarded funding from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation in support of Phase III of the Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories! Beginning in November 2014 and continuing through April 2016, Phase III will expand the project's scope to include more types of repositories with significant archival holdings, provide training opportunities and information-sharing sessions for small repository staff and volunteers, and promote HCI-PSAR as a national model.

Comments: 0