PARK(ing) Day with an archives twist!

Do you know about PARK(ing) Day? It’s a once a year event where people turn parking spaces into “parklets.” We’re participating this year, but we’re doing an archival spin on it: we’re hosting a PARK(ives)! We’ll be taking over a space in the Library parking lot on Friday and creating a space for you to create a document and add yourself to the Archives.

Details: Friday, September 21, 9 am – 4 pm, we’ll have a space out in the Consortium Library parking lot (across from Providence Hospital near the intersection of Providence Drive and Alumni Drive).

Document your Alaska: come share a memory, tell us a story, perform a song, write a poem, write a diary entry, draw a sketch from your day, download a photo, whatever you like.  We’ll have notebooks and sketchpads and video and audio recording equipment. As well as some pens, pencils, watercolors, and so on. You’re welcome to bring your own supplies to create your document if you like.

AND: for those of you coming by car, parking is free on campus this Friday so pull up to a spot near our PARK(ives) and come visit.

We’ll add the results to the Archives and share some on social media.

Oh, and if you have any questions about the Archives and what research you can do, we can answer those questions too.

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KRUA’s Informania explores the UA College Savings Plan & Alaska 529, & UA Scholars Program! Monday, Sept. 17, 1pm-2pm, replayed Friday, 1pm-2pm

Happy National College Savings Month!  On Monday, September 17, Deb the Librarian interviews Lael Oldmixon, the Executive Director of the University of Alaska Scholars Program and the College Savings Plan. Discover how Alaska 529 impacts the University of Alaska! Listen and be informed!

September 8 is International Literacy Day

International Literacy Day, celebrated annually on the 8th of September since it began in 1965, is an opportunity for governments, civil society, and stakeholders to highlight improvements in world literacy rates, and reflect on the world’s remaining literacy challenges. The issue of literacy is a key component of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

This year’s theme, ‘Literacy and Skills Development,’ explores integrated approaches to support literacy and skills that will ultimately improve people’s lives and work, and contribute to equitable and sustainable societies. International Literacy Day specifically focuses on skills and competencies required for employment, careers, and livelihoods, particularly technical, vocational, and digital skills.

Get involved in supporting literacy efforts where you live through the Alaska Literacy Program or the Literacy Council of Alaska.

–adapted from the International Literacy Day website.


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New in the Archives: August 2018

August was quite a busy month for us in the Archives. We finally finished our legacy conversion project, gave tours to students who dropped by to see what we have, and spoke to donors and new faculty. Here’s a closer look at what we were up to.

Collections described

HMC-0425: Charles S. Harvard papers; 1912-1973. 0.4 cubic foot addition. Harvard was an engineer for the Alaska Railroad. The collection includes field books and ledgers of data and hand drawn maps of the Alaska Railroad right of ways, lease holders and plat information on properties adjacent to rail lines, locations of utilities and public services, plans for redirecting and refurbishing rail lines, descriptions of mile post and bench marks, arc, curve and angle calculations for theoretical and practical applications, and temperature conversion calculations.

Charles Harvard underneath the road sign for Harvard Ave, which he named for himself. Photograph from: Betzi and Lyman Woodman papers, Archives and Special Collections, Consortium Library, University of Alaska Anchorage.

HMC-0478: Marilynn S. Barks papers; circa 1939-1961. 0.10 cubic foot addition. This collection contains personal papers and correspondence relating to Marilynn S. Barks’s life in Alaska. The majority of correspondence concerns her husband and his work in the mines, as well as life in Anchorage during WWII. Other correspondents include her brother Jack, Charles Seaton Harvard, L.S. Wickersham, relatives outside of Alaska, merchants, and an astrologer. The personal papers include insurance policies and receipts, as well as tax forms and mining claim information.

HMC-0667: Arctic Power records; circa 1978-2003. 35 cubic feet. Records of an organization that supports opening the Coastal Plain of ANWR to responsible oil development.

HMC-0687: Frederick Milan papers; 1870-1995, bulk 1942-1995. 9.5 cubic feet. Milan was an anthropologist, linguist, and human physiologist who worked in Alaska and other Arctic regions.

HMC-1296: Bob and Gayle Curtis photograph albums; 1965-1983. 0.8 cubic feet.  The collection consists of five photograph albums created by or given to Bob and Gayle Curtis, mostly relating to Tikchik Narrows Lodge. The earliest album, dating from 1966 to 1970,  documents family life, including the birth and early childhood of the couple’s son, Robert, as well as activities such as camping, fishing, and the building of Tikchik Narrows Lodge. The other four albums document fishing trips to Tikchik Narrows Lodge. Subjects of the photographs in these albums include groups of people, Tikchik Narrows Lodge, fishing, boats, airplanes, and scenery.

HMC-1297: Millard Preston photographs; 1941-1944. 0.01 cubic feet. The collection consists of photographs taken by Millard Preston during his time working on construction of the Alaska Highway in Alaska and Yukon, as well as some photographs from the Aleutian Islands, particularly Adak.

HMC-1298: Melvin Reed Mower papers; 1942-1943. 0.01 cubic feet. Mostly photographs of a man who worked on the Whittier Tunnel and on Rugged Island in Resurrection Bay. Subjects of the photographs include Portage Lake and Glacier, Rugged Island, Whittier, a fishery, a hike Mower and others went on where they found and buried the body of Jack O’Brian, and the construction of the road at Bear Valley, Portage.

Portage Lake from the Melvin Reed Mower papers.

We also added several ephemera collections.

EPH-0399: Fort Richardson Chapel Center church service programs; 1958, 1959.

Fort Richardson Chapel Center church service program

EPH-0400: Music with Mary Martin program; undated.

EPH-0401: Sheldon Jackson High School and Junior College leaflet; undated.

EPH-0402: Alaska tourism pamphlets; undated, 1957, 1958.

EPH-0403: Fort Richardson Officers Club memorabilia; 1958, 1959.

Napkin from Fort Richardson Officers Club memorabilia

EPH-0404: Alaskan Concert Tour Boston University Glee Club program; 1958.

EPH-0405: Anchorage Kiwanis Club “A Project with a Dual Purpose” pamphlet; undated.

EPH-0406: Eye, Ear, Nose and Throat Foundation of Alaska, Inc. pamphlets.

EPH-0407: U.S. Army “Information about Fort Richardson” booklet.

EPH-0408: Anchorage High School. Thespian Troupe 700 “The Little Dog Laughed” program; 1958 February 14-15.

EPH-0409: Valdez Breeze newsletter; 1958 June 21.

EPH-0410: Fort Richardson Officers Wives Club booklet and calendar; 1957-1958.

Front cover of Fort Richardson Officers Wives Club booklet

EPH-0411: Elmendorf Air Force Base and Fort Richardson Armed Forces Day program; 1958 May 17.

EPH-0412: Fort Richardson Protestant Parish The Chapel Chimes newsletters; 1958.

Collections converted to current standard

August saw the end of a project we were all looking forward to completing: the conversion of our older collection descriptions into the currently accepted national standard for describing archives (DACS or Describing Archives: A Content Standard). You can read more about that project and why it was important to us in Arlene’s blog post “Finishing a decade-long project“.

HMC-0109: Victor Fischer papers; 1950-2009. This collection consists of papers relating to the public career of Victor Fischer. Included are files relating to his legislative activities as well as to his work in planning. Among the legislative papers are files on reform and ethics, petrochemical development, the Homan trial, the Sheffield impeachment, and other matters.

HMC-0192: Old Believers naturalization ceremonies recordings; 1975, 1979.  Recordings of naturalization ceremonies for members of the Old Believers living in Alaska.

HMC-0198: People’s Vote Must Count Committee records; 1959-1981, bulk 1981. Records of a committee that supported the creation of a park on block 42 of Downtown Anchorage, instead of a convention center.

HMC-0204: Potter Section House report and plans; 1980-1986. The collection consists of a copy of a report recommending the preservation and reuse of the Potter Section House, written by the Municipal Historic Landmarks Preservation Committee. There is also a Potter Section House “Site Development Plan” and two site maps created by the Alaska Department of Natural Resources, Division of Parks and Recreation.

HMC-0224: Evan Lester Sitter film; 1948. This collection consists of a VHS videocassette copy of a color 16mm film made by Sitter while on the trip to Alaska in 1948. The trip included stops at Glacier National Park, the Canadian Border Customs Building, Dawson, the Peace River Bridge, Fort Nelson, Lake Louise, Laird Lodge, the Alaska/Yukon Border, Fairbanks, Nome, Kotzebue, Copper Center, Thompson Pass, Valdez, Juneau, Ketchikan, and Seattle. Included are pictures of mountains, rivers, waterfalls, glaciers, lakes, buffalo, bears, a fish wheel, ships, and planes.

HMC-0235: Dale A. Stirling papers; 1980-1986. This collection includes materials related to Heritage North and files of Poetry North Review.

HMC-0240: Alexander W. Swanitz letters; 1909-1910. This collection consists of two copied letters from A. W. Swanitz to George Love of Valdez, Alaska. The first concerns business concerns and the second relates to construction of the Alaska Northern Railway and politics.

HMC-0340: Elvera Voth papers; 1961-1978. The collection consists of papers relating to Elvera Voth’s work at Anchorage Community College, Alaska Methodist University, and the University of Alaska, Anchorage, and with the Sunday Afternoon Concert series. Included are concert programs, letters of appreciation, photographs, newspaper clippings, and similar papers.

HMC-0390: Thirteenth Regional Corporation records; 1971-1997.  Records relating to the administration and operation of the Thirteenth Regional Corporation. Included are records relating to the board, the shareholders, the management of the corporation, corporate finances, subsidiaries and business ventures, law cases, corporate land claims, and corporate publications.

HMC-0391: Historic American Engineering Record Cape Spencer Light Station records; 1923-1973. The collection consists primarily of elevation plans; electrical and mechanical drawings; and as built drawings of the interior and exterior of Cape Spencer Light Station

HMC-0433: Robert Wethern papers.; undated, 1973-1994. This collection consists of Robert Wethern’s papers regarding proposed articles and a book concerning the life of Grenold Collins, an Alaskan wildlife agent, guide, pilot, and sportsman.

Additions to Alaska’s Digital Archives

32 images from Jukichi (Jack) Nishida photographs; HMC-1291. Nishida worked for the Ellamar Mining Company from circa 1913-1918.

Three men in Ellamar. Jukichi Nishida is the man in the middle. From: Jukichi (Jack) Nishida photographs.

24 images from the Elmer Sundsby papers; HMC-0238. Sundsby was a fisherman in Halibut Cove, Alaska.

Carl Berg and Hannah Valentine in Seldovia, 1954. From: Elmer F. Sundsby papers.

6 images from Melvin Reed Mower papers; HMC-1298. Photographs taken during the construction of the Whittier Tunnel and Portage Glacier Road.

68 images from McGlashan and Monsen family photographs; HMC-1278. Photographs primarily taken in Naknek and Akutan.

Topic guides

We also created two new topic guides. One topic guide contains our collections which relate to aviation in Alaska. The other topic guide contains our collections which relate to Seward, Alaska, including the 1964 Earthquake, the Jesse Lee Home, military presence, and the Seward Sanatorium. It is important to remember that our topic guides are not comprehensive.

Aviation collections

Seward, Alaska related collections 

Other happenings

This month, for our podcast Archiving AK, our intern, Anna, interviewed us. In this episode we discuss what we hope to see for the future of the archives profession, what skills and knowledge we would like new professional archivists to have obtained in their archives classes, the role of professional associations in our work and development, and the types of things we wish people knew about our work.

We spoke at New Faculty orientation, had visits with donors and potential donors, and gave individual and group tours to the family of a donor, students, and potential donor.

We also had a booth at Campus Kick-off to chat with students and faculty about the Archives.

Gwen and Veronica at Campus Kick-off.

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Archiving AK episode 5: Anna the Intern interviews us

In episode 5 of Archiving AK, Anna, our grad intern over the summer, took some time out of her last week with us to interview us for the podcast. The discussion goes into topics like what we hope for/see for the future of the archives profession, what skills and knowledge we would like new professional archivists to have obtained in their archives classes, the role of professional associations in our work and development, and the types of things we wish people knew about our work.

Thanks to Anna for all her accomplishments over the summer, for putting together a fascinating set of questions for us, and ably handling discussion traffic control with three very verbal archivists!

Here’s links to some of the organizations and items mentioned in the podcast:

1:25 UCLA term positions letter

15:15 Newsbank (we use it a lot for access to obituaries and other news items when writing biographical notes for finding aids)

19:25 SAA: Society of American Archivists

21:50 Northwest Archivists

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The UAA historic photo scavenger hunt!

Fabulous prizes to be won! Are you a UAA student enrolled this fall? Think you might know your way around campus or want to try finding your way around campus? We have 8 historic photos taken on the UAA campus. Your task, should you accept it, is to find these locations and re-photograph them.

Here’s the details:

How it works:

  • Put together a team of 3-6 people, all of whom must be registered for classes at UAA in the Fall 2018 semester. Nobody can serve on more than one team.
  • Select one teammate to be your designated photographer
  • Stay safe! Don’t take any chance of injuring yourselves or others (and please, please, please, don’t climb on the artwork!)
  • Go look for the locations depicted in these photos and retake the photos with your group in them. Remember, you’re looking for the location (i.e. buildings) as some elements may have been moved. Please don’t move furniture, plants, etc to get your picture.
  • All members of your group, except the designated photographer, must be in each photograph
  • Post the photos to Instagram and make sure you tag the Archives @clarchives and use the hashtag #picturinguaa with each image (make sure it’s a public account so we can see them)
  • Email the Archives by 5 pm on 9/4 with a list of your team members and the name of the Instagram account where you posted the images
  • We want to share your work with the world so we may grab them and share them via our social media accounts (Instagram, Twitter, Facebook): by participating in the challenge you’re agreeing that it’s okay for us to do that

Prizes for:

  • The first team to complete the challenge—we’ll be using the date stamp on the email to the Archives to determine this ($20.00 UAA Bookstore gift certificate to each team member) so don’t wait til 9/4 to notify us if you finish sooner!
  • The most creative recreation of a photograph as agreed upon by the archivists and maybe a couple of celebrity UAA judges ($20.00 UAA Bookstore gift certificate to each team member)

Here’s the 8 photos (click on them to see a larger view):

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