Tag Archives: New York State Archives

Archives Month: Palisades Interstate Park Commission


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October is New York State Archives and National Archives Month, a time to celebrate and promote the rich and diverse documentary heritage of our great state by increasing public awareness of archival materials and repositories and by acknowledging the importance of our records keepers.

Archives are essential to the historical record and include a wide range of document types, including letters, legal records, transcripts, diaries, newspapers, photographs, reports, architectural drawings, manuscripts, artifacts, audio and video records, and materials in electronic formats.

The Palisades Interstate Park Commission has 110 years worth of archives in all of these categories. The PIPC’s archives are currently housed in a former naval barrack on the Iona Island Estuarine and Bird Sanctuary. The vast collection, which documents the creation and development of the nation’s first interstate park, is an important resource for historians, environmental advocates, and archaeologists. From the documentation of the movement to stop the destruction of the Palisades cliffs, the collection of statistics of multiple natural studies, to the reports and hearings that form the genesis of today’s environmental movement at Storm King Mountain, to the creation of its 28 parks and historic sites, PIPC’s archival holdings are a largely untapped Hudson Valley treasure.

Palisade’s archives are divided into four disciplines: Archaeology and Native Americans, Historical Photographs, Research Library, and Park History. Researchers, educators, and authors have used items in the collection for unlimited projects including books, films, newspaper articles, and lectures.

But like many repositories of history, the PIPC Archive is in serious need of improvement. Only generally organized, volunteers and funding are greatly needed for database entry, cataloging, digitizing documents, and general upkeep.

The Commission is grateful for its first archive grant given by the Nyack based Austin Stokes Ancient Americas Foundation in support of the PIPC Native American collection. This funding allowed the protection of this invaluable collection.

But, much more is needed. For example, of the approximately 100,000 photographs located in the collection, less than five percent have been digitized and catalogued. And the facility in which the archives are stored, originally a barracks from when Iona Island was a naval munitions factory for World Wars I & II, lacks climate control, a critical component in the preservation of any archive.

If you are interested in assisting the Palisades Interstate Park Commission to preserve and make available this unique collection, please contact Susan E. Smith, PIPC Research and Development Director, at smiths@pipc.org.

Photo: The Carpenter Quarry, Fort Lee, NJ.

Richard Dreyfuss to Receive State Archives Award


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Richard Dreyfuss, Academy Award-winning actor and passionate advocate for teaching American history in primary and secondary schools, will be given the 2010 Empire State Archives and History Award on Tuesday, September 28, 2010 at 7:30 p.m. in The Egg, Empire State Plaza, downtown Albany. As part of the program, Dreyfuss will be interviewed by noted Lincoln scholar Harold Holzer about his life, work and passion for history. Tickets are $10 and may be obtained from The Egg Box Office at (518) 473-1845 or online at www.theegg.org. The event is sponsored by the New York State Archives Partnership Trust, Greenberg Traurig, the Times Union, the History channel, and the New York State Writers Institute.

Dreyfuss is a leading advocate for the teaching of history in America’s primary and secondary schools. Recently, the Brooklyn-born actor founded a nonprofit organization, The Dreyfuss Initiative, whose mission is to promote Constitutional literacy, historical appreciation and open political dialogue among young people. Regarding the group’s mission, Dreyfuss states, “We are a nation bound by ideas only. We have no common ancestry, no common religion, no common military victory or defeat, no common crime that binds us. If you don’t teach those ideas to every new generation of Americans with wit and rigor, we are not bound.”

A member of the Board of Trustees of the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, Dreyfuss served as Senior Associate Member of St. Antony’s College, Oxford, where he researched and developed new curricula for teaching the history and practice of democracy in public schools.

Dreyfuss received the Academy Award for Best Actor in Neil Simon’s The Goodbye Girl (1977), the youngest actor to be so honored until 2002. Dreyfuss was nominated a second time for Mr. Holland’s Opus in 1995. The actor’s other noteworthy films include The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz (1974), his first lead role, American Graffiti (1973), Jaws (1975), Down and Out in Beverly Hills (1986), Tin Men (1987), Krippendorf’s Tribe (1998), and Oliver Stone’s W. (2008). Dreyfuss’s remarkable performance in W. as Vice President Dick Cheney earned him a great deal of critical attention and praise. Dreyfuss received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1996.

Dreyfuss’s many television credits include four episodes of the Showtime series, Weeds in its 2010 season, two episodes voicing himself in the 2009 season of Family Guy, and the title role in the CBS series, The Education of Max Bickford (2001-2002), about a history professor at a women’s college. The latter role earned him a Screen Actors Guild nomination for Best Actor.

Dreyfuss is also the coauthor of a novel with leading fantasy writer, Harry Turtledove – The Two Georges (1995), which presents an alternative history of the American Revolution.

In advance of the program, a ticketed reception to honor Dreyfuss will be held at The Egg from 5:30-7:00 p.m. To learn more, contact the Trust at (518) 486-9349, or online at http://www.archives.nysed.gov. Proceeds will benefit the New York State Archives and Archives Partnership Trust.

New York State Archives Research Grants Available


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The NYS Archives and the Archives Partnership Trust announce the availability of awards to qualified applicants, including students, teachers and public historians, to pursue research using historical records at the New York State Archives. Awards generally range from $100-$4,500 for advanced research in New York history, government, or public policy.

The Larry J. Hackman Research Residency Program supports applicants from a variety of backgrounds with awards for advanced research in New York State history, government, or public policy. Previous residents have included academic and public historians, graduate students, independent researchers and writers, and primary and secondary school teachers. The project must draw on the holdings of the New York State Archives. Projects may involve alternative uses of the Archives, such as research for multimedia projects, exhibits, documentary films, and historical novels.

The Quinn-Archives Research Residency provides financial support for an individual to spend up to a year in Albany, New York, working in the rich collections of the New Netherland Institute and the New York State Archives. The program is offered because of the generous support of the Doris Quinn Foundation, the New Netherland Institute www.nnp.org at the New York State Library and the New York State Archives.

Endowment earnings and private contributions to the Archives Partnership Trust provide the financial basis for the Hackman Research Program. Contributors have included The Susan and Elihu Rose Foundation, Inc., Henry Luce Foundation, Inc., The Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation and The Lucius N. Littaur Foundation. Contributions and endowment earnings enable the Trust to maintain prior years’ award levels, as well as to continue with invitational fellowships to complete priority projects.

NYS Archives Student Research Award Contest


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The State Archives has announced its twentieth annual Student Research Award contest which encourages grade 4-12 students to explore the wealth of historical records found in archives, libraries, and other historical community organizations throughout New York State. A total of three awards will be given, one each for students in grades 4-5, grades 6-8, and grades 9-12. Each award consists of a certificate and cash prize. Certificates of Merit will be awarded to those entries, other than the winners, that show a heavy reliance on historical records to support their research.

Recipients will be selected by September 15, and winners will be announced during Archives Month in October, 2010. Entries submitted for competition must be researched and developed during the July 1, 2009 – June 30, 2010 school year. Entries are due July 1, 2010; details can be found at the NYS Archives website.

Photo: October 7, 1921 – School in Session, Sunset School, Marey, WV, Lewis Hine

State Archives Social Networking Pilot Project


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The New York State Archives is participating in a New York State Education Department pilot project testing the value of social networking sites in the government environment. The Archives currently has posted videos, images and news updates to Flickr, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. The Archives is welcoming feedback either through the sites or via email at archinfo@mail.nysed.gov. Here are the the various sites:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/nys_archives/
http://www.facebook.com/nysarchives
http://www.youtube.com/nysarchives
http://twitter.com/nysarchives

NYS Archives: Rights of Women in Early New York


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The New York State Archives is providing teachers and students with online access to historical records that illuminate the history of women’s rights in New York State from its earliest days as New Netherland through the mid 19th century through it’s quarterly online Document Showcase program which highlights a topic from state history using records from the Archives.

Each Showcase includes sample documents, an historical sketch and links to educational activities for classroom use. The topics are based upon the State Education Department’s core curriculum for 7th and 8th grade social studies as well as special events of that quarter. The educational activities are created by a teacher and correlate to New York State learning standards. Each Showcase also provides links within the State Archives’ website for further information on the topic.

In addition, because many early documents are difficult to read, translations and transcriptions are provided where necessary. This quarter’s Document Showcase on women’s rights can be found on the Archives website at www.archives.nysed.gov, and includes an excerpt of a marriage contract from 1643, a petition by a widow’s sons that she be granted a letter of administration from 1670, a law excerpt from 1710 classifying women as equals of minors and those “not of Sound mind,” and a law excerpt from 1848 protecting the property of married women.

Photo: Excerpt from the Laws of New York from 1848, Chapter 200, allowing women to own and manage real property separate from their husbands. Courtesy the New York State Archives.

Archived Websites of Defunct NY State Government


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Maybe someone is sending us a message. Just when New York State Governor David Paterson is criticizing his fellow lawmakers over their ethics, the New York State Archives has announced that the archived websites of the defunct organizations designed to investigate political corruption are online. Part of an online collection called Archived State Government Websites, archival copies of the websites of former Governors George Pataki and Eliot Spitzer, along with other former elected officials and those of the defunct bodies such as the Commission of Investigation and the Commission on Lobbying are all available on the New York State Archives’ website.

The collection also includes the State Northeastern Queens Nature and Historical Preserve Commission (SNEQ) which was created in 1973 to regulate publicly owned lands and wetlands in northeastern Queens County (eliminated in the 2009-10 Executive Budget).

The Temporary State Commission of Investigation was created in 1958 and had a broad mandate to investigate “corruption, fraud, organized crime, racketeering, money laundering, the conduct of public officers, public employees, officers and employees of public corporations and authorities, and mismanagement in New York State and local government.”

Temporary State Commission on Lobbying was created in 1977 and “monitored individuals and organizations seeking to influence State legislation, rules, regulations, and rate-making actions or local laws, ordinances, and regulations.” It’s mandate (and staff) was transferred to the new State Commission on Public Integrity in 2007.

There is a FAQ about what material on the sites are actually archived, and each record group has a separate FAQ on background and site-specific access problems.

NY State Archives’ Student Research Awards Program


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The New York State Archives has announced its twentieth annual Student Research Awards program to promote and recognize excellence in student research. The main purpose of the awards program is to encourage students to explore the wealth of historical records in New York State. A secondary purpose is to increase cooperation between schools and organizations that administer historical records useful for education. The New York State Archives encourages the participation of school library media specialists in this project.

The Student Research Awards program is a statewide competition open to all New York State students in grades 4–12. A total of three awards will be given, one each for students in grades 4–5, grades 6–8, and grades 9–12.

Each award consists of a certificate and a cash prize. Certificates of Merit will also be awarded to entries other than the winners that show a heavy reliance on historical records to support research.

Timetable – Entries must be postmarked no later than July 1, 2010.

Recipients will be selected by September 15, and winners will be announced during Archives Month in October, 2010. Entries submitted for competition must be researched and developed during the July 1, 2009 – June 30, 2010 school year.

More information on the Student Research Awards can be found here.

Documentary Heritage Program Grants Announcement


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The New York State Department of Education has announced the Documentary Heritage Program (DHP) funding for 2010-2011. DHP is a statewide program established in 1988 and administered by the New York State Archives to ensure the identification, sound administration and accessibility of New York’s historical records.

One the most important components of the DHP is the grants program. DHP Grants are designed to encourage more comprehensive documentation of New York State*s history and culture by supporting projects that identify, survey, collect, and make available important records relating to groups and topics traditionally under-represented in the historical record. DHP is administered by the New York State Archives.

Eligible applicants include not-for-profit community organizations, archives, libraries, historical societies, and similar institutions within New York State and consortia or partnerships of such agencies. Also eligible are service providers such as historical service agencies, colleges and universities, professional associations, or other not-for-profit institutions or systems that provide services to historical records programs.

A total of $92,000 is expected to be available for grants projects. Grants will be available in amounts up to $25,000. Applicants may seek support for personnel; purchased services, including qualified consultants; supplies; materials and equipment costing less than $5,000; and travel as required to directly support project activities and outcomes.

Grants in this cycle are for up to 12-month projects, from July 1, 2010 through June 30, 2011. Applications must be postmarked by Monday, February 1, 2010. Tentative date for the announcement of grant awards is June 30, 2010.

Grant Project Types

Documentation – The purpose of a documentation project is to identify and ensure the systematic preservation of papers and records not currently in historical records repositories that provide information on the people, groups, events or changing political, economic or social conditions of New York State. A documentation project typically consists of three phases – planning, surveying, and collecting – and usually takes at least two years to complete. Cost sharing of at least 20% is required for Documentation projects.

Arrangement & Description – Arrangement and description are the processes used to obtain physical and intellectual control over materials held in historic records repositories. Arrangement is the process of organizing materials with respect to their provenance and original order, to protect their context and to achieve physical and/or
intellectual control over the materials. Description is the creation of an accurate representation of a unit of archival material by the process of capturing, collating, analyzing, and organizing information that serves to identify archival material and explain the context and records system(s) that produced it. The objective of archival description is the creation of access tools that assist users in discovering desired
records. Cost sharing of at least 50% is required for Arrangement & Description
projects.

Archival Needs Assessment – Historical records repositories undertake needs assessments to evaluate and plan for archival program development. As a result, a comprehensive needs assessment, carried out by an experienced archivist with the requisite expertise, will pinpoint problems, recommend solutions, set priorities, and guide the development
of archival activity. Cost sharing of at least 50% is required for Archival Needs Assessment projects.

Ineligible Projects

Several types of historical records projects are not eligible for funding under the DHP. These include:

* Projects that do not have primary focus on New York State
* Digitization (projects to create digital records)
* Item-level description and/or indexing
* Oral history and/or video taping
* Newspapers (these are not considered to be historical records under the DHP law)
* Preservation (i.e., the physical work to conserve, restore, or repair records, or reproduction for preservation purposes such as microfilming)

In order to insure that the DHP addresses the New York State Historical Records Advisory Board*s mandate to identify, survey, collect, and make available historical records that relate to under-documented groups or subjects, the State Archives has identified and given priority to specific topical areas for DHP funding. These topics are listed in Priority Levels One and Two below. Although applications for projects
that focus on any under-documented group or subject are eligible for funding, they will receive fewer points during grants review than those in Levels One and Two.

Priority Level One
* Population groups in the 20th and 21st centuries
* Economic change in the 20th and 21st centuries
* World Trade Center disaster, September 11, 2001
* Education policy

Priority Level Two
* Environmental affairs
* Mental health

Priority Level Three
* Other under-documented topics in New York State history

Application Process

Grant application forms and guidelines will be available in October 2009. They may be obtained by emailing the State Archives at dhs@nysed.gov or by visiting the State Archives Web site at http://www.archives.nysed.gov/a/grants/grants_dhp.shtml.

For further information, contact:

Pamela Cooley/Documentary Heritage Program
New York State Archives
Room 9C71 Cultural Education Center
Albany, NY 12230
Telephone: 518-474-6926
Email: dhs@mail.nysed.gov

State Archives Launches New Tool for Educators


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Students, researchers, and lovers of New York State history from around the world will have a better sense of the types of records held by the New York State Archives with the launch of Document Showcase, a quarterly feature on the New York State Archives’ website that will highlight iconic records by investigating specific historical topics.

Quarterly Document Showcase submissions will feature a display of 3-5 hand-picked historical records on a selected topic, background information on those records, a link to educational activities for classroom use, and other related information. All learning activities are being developed by classroom teachers, are based on the New York 7th and 8th grade social studies core curriculum, and relate to New York State learning standards.

October’s edition of Document Showcase examines industrialization and child labor in New York State. The records include: a Factory Investigating Commission brief sent to the state Supreme Court supporting restrictions on the manufacture of goods in tenement houses; letters for and against child labor from Governor Lehman’s subject and
correspondence files; excerpts from chapter 529 of the laws of 1913 restricting child labor; and a union label from the Cigar Makers’ International Union of America expressing opposition to tenement-house manufacturing and other non-union labor. The records of the Factory Investigating Commission, created after the devastating Triangle
Shirtwaist Factory Fire in 1911, uncovered a range of substandard working conditions being experienced by low paid factory workers throughout New York State, many of whom were immigrants and/or women and children.

The Document Showcase is accessed from the State Archives website: www.archives.nysed.gov and select “Document Showcase” under “News and Events.”

Henry Louis Gates, Jr. To Appear in Albany


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The State Archives and the Archives Partnership Trust have organized an evening honoring Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. with the Empire State Archives and History Award on October 26th at the Egg in the Empire State Plaza. The event promises an “engaging evening of conversation between nationally renowned scholar of African American studies,” who along with nationally prominent Lincoln Scholar Harold Holzer, will discuss Dr. Gates’ life, work and passion for history.

A literary critic, educator, scholar, writer, editor, and public intellectual, Henry Louis Gates, Jr. was the first African American to receive the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Fellowship. Gates hosted the 2006 and 2008 PBS television miniseries African American Lives, which explored the genealogy of prominent African Americans. He is the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor at Harvard University, where he is also Director of the W. E. B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research.

The event will be held Monday, October 26, 2009 at The Egg, Center for the Performing Arts at 7:30 p.m. The cost is $10 per person; for reservations call The Egg Box Office at (518) 473-1845.

In advance of the program, a reception to honor Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. will be held at The Egg, Center for the Performing Arts, from 5:30-7:00 pm.

Members of the Trust ………………………..$50.00 a person
Become a Member and attend reception…..$65.00 a person
Non-Members…………………………………..$75.00 a person

All reception attendees will also receive a complimentary ticket to the 7:30 pm program in The Egg. If attending the reception you do not need to make a separate reservation at The Egg Box Office.

To learn more about the reception please contact Grazia Yaeger, manager of membership & special initiatives, Archives Partnership Trust at (518) 474-1228 with questions. Reservations are not confirmed until payment is received.

RVSP by October 20, 2009.

Proceeds from this event will go to support the projects of the New York State Archives and Archives Partnership Trust.

Managing Your Historical Photographs Workshops


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The New York State Archives is offering two new workshops on managing historical photographs. The first, offered at three locations around the state in October is intended to present strategies for taking physical and intellectual control of photographs to ensure their long-term access and use. Participants will hear methods of organizing and making accessible photographic material, and preservation guidelines for photographs, along with reference, exhibition, and outreach strategies will be outlined. The workshops are free and open to the public. The second workshop in the two part series, “Digitizing Your Historical Photographs,” will be available next year.

Schedule and Registration

October 13, 2009, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Hanford Mills, East Meredith, NY
Presenter Ray LeFever, Coordinator of Archival Advisory Services, NYS Archives Register by downloading a registration form from Upstate History Alliance

October 20, 2009, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
New City Library, New City, NY (Rockland County)
Presenter Ray LeFever, Coordinator of Archival Advisory Services, NYS Archives
Register by emailing Dianne Macpherson at Greater Hudson Heritage Network.

October 20, 2009 9:15 a.m. – 1:15 p.m.
Schenectady County Library Schenectady, NY
Presenter Denis Meadows, Regional Advisory Officer, NYS Archives Region 4
Register online with the State Archives.

For more information e-mail ARCHTRAIN@mail.nysed.gov.

Photo: Bart Warren and helper in his blacksmith shop, West Sand Lake, NY c. 1900
@greaterhudson.org>

Research Grants Available at the NYS Archives


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The Larry J. Hackman Research Residency Program supports applicants from a variety of backgrounds with awards for advanced research in New York State history, government, or public policy. Previous residents have included academic and public historians, graduate students, independent researchers and writers, and primary and secondary school teachers. The project must draw on the holdings of the New York State Archives. Projects may involve alternative uses of the Archives, such as research for multimedia projects, exhibits, documentary films, and historical novels.

The Quinn-Archives Research Residency provides financial support for an individual to spend up to a year in Albany, New York, working in the rich collections of the New Netherland Institute and the New York State Archives. The program is offered because of the generous support of the Doris Quinn Foundation, the New Netherland Institute at the New York State Library and the New York State Archives.

Endowment earnings and private contributions to the Archives Partnership Trust provide the financial basis for the Hackman Research Program. Contributors have included The Susan and Elihu Rose Foundation, Inc., Henry Luce Foundation, Inc., The Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation and The Lucius N. Littaur Foundation. Contributions and endowment earnings enable the Trust to maintain prior years’ award levels, as well as to continue with invitational fellowships to complete priority projects.

New York State Archives Launches RSS Feed


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The New York State Archives has launched a news feed using RSS (Really Simple Syndication) technology. Subscribers will be among the first to find out about Archives events, new records brought into the Archives, press releases, resources for state agencies and local governments, and any major changes to the website – such as new guides to records, new educational sites for teachers and students, and award and grant opportunities.

RSS technology enables users to view updates from organizations through an RSS Reader such as an Internet Browser, e-mail, or a third-party reader. RSS Readers provide a brief summary of news updates from an organization and then link to the full article on the organization’s website. Users will be able to stay up-to-date with news from the State Archives once they have subscribed to the RSS feed. To sign up for the
RSS feed, go to http://www.archives.nysed.gov/rss/news.xml.

The New York State Archives, a part of the State Education Department, preserves and makes accessible the essential recorded evidence – past and present – of New York’s governments, organizations, peoples, and events. At its Albany facility, the State Archives cares for more than 200 million archival records of New York State government dating from the 1630s to the present. The State Archives also offers technical assistance, financial support, and other services to local governments and community organizations in every region of the state.

La Escuela Electrónica / The Electronic Schoolhouse


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The New York State Archives and Archives Partnership Trust have announced La Escuela Electrónica/The Electronic Schoolhouse, a bilingual website for teachers focusing on the Latino experience in New York. Using historical records such as photographs, letters, flyers, broadsides and more dating from 1861 to the present, the website combines historical records and technology to promote the development of critical thinking skills, reading and writing skills, understanding historical content and context. Continue reading

Governor Hugh Carey Photos Go Online


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In an ongoing effort to make records more accessible, the New York State Archives collaborated with former New York Governor Hugh L. Carey’s director of communications, William F. Snyder, and the Carey family to create an online digital collection from the Archives’ gubernatorial records of Hugh Carey in celebration of the governor’s 90th birthday in April 2009.

Archives staff worked with Snyder and the Carey family to select and identify approximately 400 photographs from Carey’s two terms as state governor, his family pictures, and his congressional career. Governor Carey’s legacy was firmly established in the early years of his administration when he provided the strong leadership needed to rescue New York City from bankruptcy. A lifelong Democrat, Governor Carey is also remembered for his fierce advocacy on behalf of the disabled and for the I Love New York campaign that energized tourism in New York.

The photos can be found at http://www.archives.nysed.gov/d/.

Photo: Governor Carey with Frank Sinatra.

Adirondack Museum To Process Petty Collection


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The Adirondack Museum at Blue Mountain Lake has announced the appointment of Melissa Tacke as Project Archivist to describe and arrange the collections of personal papers belonging to two of the founding fathers of the Adirondack Park Agency: Clarence Petty and Richard Lawrence.

The Clarence Petty Papers consist of correspondence, subject files, memoranda, aviation and weather records, newspaper clippings, government documents, books and other publications, audio recordings, memorabilia, awards, photographs, and 62 maps. These records document Clarence Petty’s long career with the Conservation Department and the Department of Environmental Conservation, as well as his influential role in the creation of the Adirondack Park Agency and the Adirondack Park Land Use Master Plan.

The papers also reflect Petty’s relationship with contemporary environmentalists, environmental organizations and government agencies, and his position as an authority and spokesman on environmental issues throughout the country. The collection dates from circa 1939 through 2006. Clarence Petty donated the papers to the Adirondack Museum in November 2006.

The Richard Lawrence Papers consist of correspondence, subject files, memoranda, notes, publications, books, government documents, memorabilia, awards, and photographs. They document Richard Lawrence’s work as a member of the Temporary Study Commission on the Future of the Adirondacks and as the founding Chairman of the Adirondack Park Agency. The records date from the mid 1960s to the 1990s and were donated to the museum by the Lawrence family in 2006.

Tacke’s position has been funded by a grant in the amount of $9,669 from the New York State Archive’s Documentary Heritage Program. The Documentary Heritage Program (DHP) is a statewide program established by law in 1988 to ensure the identification, sound administration, and accessibility of New York’s historical records. The DHP provides grants to not-for-profit organizations in New York State that collect, hold, and make available historical records. Tacke will work in the Adirondack Museum’s research library from April 6 through June 30, 2009 under the terms of the grant.

Melissa Tacke holds three degrees from SUNY Albany. Her Bachelor’s degree was awarded for a double major in Women’s Studies and Africana. She holds one Master’s degree in Women’s Studies and a second in Information Studies. She is a native of Lawrence, Kansas. Tacke comes to the Adirondack Museum following nearly a year of work at Bennington College, Bennington, Vermont as a Project Archivist, funded by a Getty Campus Heritage Grant. She also served as a Digital Images Archivist.

Photo Caption: Project Archivist Melissa Tacke at left with Adirondack Museum Librarian Jerry Pepper. Adirondack Museum Photo.

Presidential Historian Wins Archives and History Award


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Best selling author and historian Michael Beschloss, a scholar named by Newsweek magazine as “the nation’s leading Presidential historian,” will be in Albany, Wednesday, Oct. 22 to receive the New York State Archives Partnership Trust’s 2008 Empire State Archives and History Award. The hour-long conversation on the upcoming Presidential election and awards ceremony will be held at The Egg, Center for the Performing Arts at the Empire State Plaza at 7:30 p.m.

According to New York State Archivist and Trust CEO Christine W. Ward, Mr. Beschlosswas selected to receive the award based upon his rich and distinguished career as one of this nation’s leading interpreters of the American Presidency. “We are honored to, once again, have Mr. Beschloss return to Albany as we honor him for his decades of extraordinary scholarship on many of the nation’s most recent presidents, as well as the components of Presidential character,” she said.

A native of Chicago, Mr. Beschloss has an extraordinary academic pedigree, having attended Andover, Williams (where he studied under the legendary Williams’ College professorJames McGregor Burns) and Harvard. In recognition of his accomplishments to the world of academe, he has received three honorary doctorates.

A prolific contributor to the national dialogue on the American Presidency, Mr. Beschloss has written nine books on American Presidents. His most recent two books, Presidential Courage (2007) and The Conquerors (2002), were each on the New York Times bestseller list for months. Presidential Courage was #1 on the Washington Post bestseller list. The Conquerors was Amazon.com’s top bestselling history book of the year.

Mr. Beschloss’s previous books include two volumes on Lyndon Johnson’s secret tapes, which a New York Times editorial called “an important event,” and The Crisis Years, which the New Yorker called the “definitive” history of John Kennedy and the Cold War.

A regular commentator of national prestige, Mr. Beschloss serves as the NBC NewsPresidential Historian, the first time a major television network created such a position. He appears on all NBC News programs, hosting a regular segment on NBC’s Today show called “American Minute with Michael Beschloss.” He is also a commentator on PBS’s “The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer” and writes a regular column for Newsweek called “Traveling through History with Michael Beschloss.”

The Empire State Archives and History Award was inaugurated in 2005 to honor national figures who, through their achievements, have advanced the understanding and uses of history within our society. Previous winners have included: C-SPAN founder and CEO Brian Lamb, actor Sam Waterston for his efforts to bring Abraham Lincoln and other characters from U.S. history to life on stage and screen, and Pulitzer Prize winning writer and historian Doris Kearns Goodwin.

Title sponsors for the New York State Archives Partnership Trust’s signature event are Time Warner Cable and History. Premier sponsors include: Einhorn Yaffee Prescott Architecture and Engineering P.C., Greenberg Traurig, Key Private Bank, New York State United Teachers, Times Union, and New York Council for the Humanities. Supporting sponsors include: 2K Design; 74 State; Berkshire Bank; Chateau LaFayette Reneau; Edward Ryan; Janney Montgomery Scott LLC; McCadam Cheese; WAMC Northeast Public Radio; Whiteman Osterman & Hanna LLP, Attorneys at Law; and Wojeski & Co., CPAs, P.C.

Tickets for the Empire State Archives and History Award are $10 and are available at The Egg Box Office. Invitations to a private fund-raising reception with Mr. Beschloss may be obtained by calling (518) 474-1228.

Essex Co. Historical Society Wins Archives Award


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The Board of Regents and the New York State Archives have selected the Essex County Historical Society | Adirondack History Center Museum in Elizabethtown to receive the 2008 Annual Archives Award for Program Excellence in a Historical Records Repository. The award will be presented to Essex County Historical Society Director Margaret Gibbs, Assistant Director Jenifer Kuba, and Museum Educator Lindsay Pontius at a luncheon ceremony at the State Education Building in Albany on October 20, 2008.

The award commends Essex County Historical Society for its outstanding archival program that contributes significantly to understanding the region’s history. The award recognizes the historical society for its well organized and managed archives and for its efforts to provide access to the county’s documentary heritage through interesting exhibitions and excellent educational programs for school children.

Previous award winners include Schenectady County Historical Society (2007), Huguenot Historical Society in New Paltz (2006), M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives at the University at Albany (2005), Onondaga Historical Association (2004), Canajoharie Library and Art Gallery (2003), and Hofstra University (2002)

NYS Archives Research Residency Program


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The Archives Partnership Trust and the New York State Archives announce the availability of awards to support research using state government records held by the Archives. The Larry J. Hackman Research Residency program is intended to encourage product-related research in such areas as history, law, public policy, geography, and culture by covering research-related expenses such as travel, lodging, meals, and copying of records. Award amounts have ranged from $100 to $4,500.

Academic and public historians, graduate students, independent researchers and writers, and primary and secondary school teachers are encouraged to apply. Projects involving alternative uses of the State Archives, such as background research for multimedia projects, exhibits, documentary films, and historical novels, are eligible. The topic or area of study must draw, at least in part, on the holdings of the New York State Archives.

Information on the 2009 Larry J. Hackman Research Residency Program and application forms are available online at www.nysarchivestrust.org For further information contact the Archives Partnership Trust, Cultural Education Center, Suite 9C49, Albany, New York 12230; (518) 473 7091. Applications must be postmarked by January 15, 2009.