Local History Interest Group meeting, Friday, March 11, 2016

10:00-12:00, PLSHQ Collaborative Space

Newspaper Inventory progress

Anecdote - I mentioned at an RRLC meeting that I was adding links to NY Historic Newspapers (and other links) to our catalog records and there was amazement. So, yay, PLS - ahead of the curve! I also asked if the NY Historic Newspapers site captured referring URLs, to see from where people were being directed to the site. I am hoping to see some evidence that this tactic actually works.

Follow up:
  • Email sent to NYSHN asking about stats
  • Thanks to everybody who has submitted inventories to me!
  • And thanks in advance to everybody who will do so in the future!
  • Almost all of our next steps rely on inventories!

Microfilm digitized by fultonhistory

Some area newspapers have already been digitized by fultonhistory… do libraries have copies of these digital files? Do local historian's offices? If existing digital files can be located, film does not have to be re-digitized.

List of area newspapers available via fultonhistory

Tech Grant - digitizing microfilm

Need total count of rolls to digitize, libraries interested in participating

Digitizing paper holdings

Possible RRLC grant funds

  • This is NOT a sure thing, only mentioned
  • Digitizing print newspapers in outside of the scop of PLS's abilities and would be outsourced

NY Heritage & NYS Historic Newspapers

Lindsay is proposing to take on administrative/technical/grunt labor roll for getting member library resources into the respective NYS repositories.

Hard drives of files received (3/11) to route to NYHN:
  • Williamson
  • Sodus
  • LYO backup CDs being reformatted and prepared

Detour into oral histories…

Lindsay & Kathryn have been working on a collection of oral histories held by Lyons. Resources like these can be added to NY Heritage. RRLC has equipment that we can borrow to digitize things like cassettes…

  • Kathryn has added catalog records for LYO - in staff client search "lyons oral history" to see examples of records
  • Theresa @LYO interested in (at some point) digitizing the tapes for preservation and access. They may not want to put the histories up online.
  • Carol @SOD mentioned recently receiving oral histories
  • Contents notes are added to the records, these are keyword searchable!

RRLC CE program on community history


Lots of interest from the group. Lindsay is planning to attend. There are also grant opportunities for libraries to develop community history programs, such as this one from the NEH - http://www.neh.gov/grants/preservation/common-heritage. Something like this would probably be a great opportunity later in the future, but worthwhile to start thinking about now. Maybe the community involvement aspect will change our local history priorities?

As an aside, Kristin from PAL mentioned that she has been encouraging library volunteers to help with local history projects at the library, and that there is a lot of excitement.

County Historian collaboration subgroup

Assigned Carolyn Lyons (Wyoming Cty; PLS Board, SS volunteer), Theresa Streb (Wayne Cty; LYO director), Blanche Warner (Ontario Cty; NAP director), and Terry Dearing (Livingston Cty; DAN director)

This group will need to meet/discuss what their goals and objectives are.


On site cataloging

Kathryn will provide ON-SITE cataloging of local history materials! If you are interested, call or email. Before she comes out, there are a few things libraries need to do first:
  • Do an inventory
  • Identify which items already have catalog records
    • These may need record clean up, but are lower priority
  • Weed any non-cataloged items that are out of scope for your collection, commonly held, or generally not worth keeping
  • Prioritize items that need records

Vertical files

We will catalog vertical files!
  • For an example record, keyword search for "perry vertical" - this is still very basic
  • General principles are: title record for the entire vertical file collection, volume records for individual folders. So, call numbers would be something like "Drawer 1 / File 1: Accidents", "Drawer 1 / File 2: Apple Festival", etc. Specific subjects and content keywords would be added to the record
  • If libraries have more comprehensive inventories/contents lists/finding aids, these could possibly be published to the owwl.org website and linked to the catalog record
  • If vertical file materials are digitized, that could also be linked to the catalog record


How can we/do we capture statistics for use of digital/online materials, access from the catalog, etc.?
  • Google Analytics
    • PLS uses for owwl.org website
    • The catalog is harder; Lindsay will be learning how to get data about catalog searches from Evergreen logs (EG conference in April) and hopes this will provide useful information
    • Sodus uses, provides info for their Advantage digital files?
  • Kim @WIL mentioned that Advantage needs to set up statistical tracking when creating the digital access, can't be done after the fact

Various copyright issues…
  • NYSHN requires a permission agreement for copyright holders before uploading copyright protected papers
  • Materials published before 1923 are not copyright protected
  • Copyright / permissions for oral histories?
  • How to establish copyright for defunct publications
  • Copyright for vertical files / clippings files?

Hoffman Essays

Wayne county libraries should convene to discuss the Hoffman essays. Theresa @LYO volunteered to contact the county historian, and also Shawn McConnel (NEW director) to verify if NEW has a complete run of all Hoffman Essays. Wayne county libraries should, in the meantime, identify the esays that they hold and compare their holdings to the catalog records. Because different Wayne libraries have different essays (libraries received copies of essays that address their communities) the catalog records are a mess.

To do…

  • Create/update resources page for: copyright information, best practices for digitization, master list of regional newspapers - Lindsay
  • Contact NYSHN re: access stats - Lindsay (email sent)
  • Contact Wayne Cty Historian and Newark library re: Hoffman Essays - Therea Streb
  • Identify Hoffman Essay holdings - ALL Wayne County libraries!

Next Meeting

Friday, June 10, 2016, 10:00-12:00 at PLSHQ Large Meeting Room
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