Oh, the Places You'll Go with HCI-PSAR!

Home Blogs Archival Adventures in Small Repositories Oh, the Places You'll Go with HCI-PSAR!

Oh, the Places You'll Go with HCI-PSAR!

2013-01-09 00:00

HCI-PSAR staff visited 47 repositories and surveyed about 4,600 linear feet of archival holdings during the 14-month pilot phase of the project! We created a new interactive map on the HSP website so you can see where we've been.

Of the 47 repositories, 21 were in Philadelphia County and 26 were in Montgomery County.

Although many of the institutions served several functions--such as historical societies with museum displays, or historic sites that also hosted historical societies--we slotted each into one of four categories based on its primary mission. These categories are color-coded on the map. The most common type was "historical society" (22 institutions, indicated by the color yellow), followed by "historic site" (14, red), and "museum" (6, blue). The remaining institutions, including a public library, an LGBT community organization, and an artists' group, we called "other" (5, green).

We also kept track of the staffing situations at each of the repositories we visited. Only 6 organizations employed an archivist on a part-time or consulting basis. (Organizations with full-time archivists were excluded from the project, but part-time was okay.) Nearly half of the places we went--20 organizations--were all-volunteer. A large number employed someone with a background in history, museums, or allied fields, but not specifically an archivist: 14 organizations. The remaining 6 organizations had some staff, but not a history professional.

To see all 47 repositories included in HCI-PSAR Phase I, check out the map below! (Or go to  Google Maps for a full-size version that is easier to navigate and includes website links.)

View HCI-PSAR Phase I in a larger map


Sites surveyed: 
1st Regiment Infantry Museum
American Swedish Historical Museum
Awbury Arboretum
Bridesburg Historical Society
Byberry Library
Chestnut Hill Historical Society
Conshohocken Historical Society
East Falls Historical Society
Eastern State Penitentiary
Fireman's Hall Museum
Germantown Historical Society
Glen Foerd on the Delaware
Goschenhoppen Historians, Inc.
Grand Army of the Republic Museum and Library
Highlands Historical Society
Historical Society of Fort Washington
Historical Society of Montgomery County
Historical Society of Tacony
The Historical Society of Trappe, Collegeville, Perkiomen Valley
Historical Society of Whitpain
Horsham Preservation and Historical Association
John Bowman Bartram Special Collections Library
John J. Wilcox Jr. GLBT Archives of Philadelphia
John James Audubon Center at Mill Grove
Limerick Township Historical Society
Lower Merion Historical Society
Lower Pottsgrove Historical Society
Millbrook Society
Montgomery Township Historical Society
Mummers Museum
Old York Road Historical Society
Pennypacker Mills
Philadelphia Sketch Club
Pottsgrove Manor
Pottstown Historical Society
Ryerss Museum and Library
Springfield Township Historical Society
St. James Community History Center
Strawberry Mansion
Sunrise Mill
Union Library of Hatboro
Upper Moreland Historical Association
Welsh Valley Preservation Society
Wissahickon Valley Historical Society
Woodford Mansion
Woodlands Mansion and Cemetery
Worcester Historical Society


Submitted by Karen Reeds (not verified) on

This is a wonderful project! Can't wait to find out more about what you turn up.

But the blog entry would be more helpful if you made it clear that the list of repositories/websites is available on the larger map on Google maps. Or better yet, just include that list in the blog entry itself, with links to any blog entries as well.

Karen Reeds, Ph.D.
Independent curator

Submitted by Celia Caust-Ell... on

Hi Karen,

As per your suggestions, I updated the blog with a direct link to the larger map in Google Maps and with a list of the repositories. (I didn't have time to add in all the blog links, but I may return and do that later.) Thank you very much for your helpful feedback!


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