Clock Tower

Out of the Clock Tower

Hello and welcome to the Greene County Archives' blog, "Out of the Clock Tower".  Please join us as we share information on archival issues, news, special events, and highlights from our collection.

Before the archives program began in Greene County in 1996, permanent records were stored in every conceivable space, in basements, garages, and closets. Usually they were in boxes of various shapes and sizes, although seldom adequately labeled, but occasionally they were just in loose piles of books and papers. Most notable were the old records stuffed into the clock tower of the County Courthouse, where they shared their home with pigeon droppings.

Now, there is a clean, environmentally controlled, well appointed location for the county archives, where our historical records are housed in standard sized boxes on steel shelves. We have taken note of their journey in the name for our blog.

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Oct 05

Family History Month and More

Posted on October 5, 2017 at 4:55 PM by Jessica Cromer

It's Family History Month and more!

Last week we talked about American Archives Month which includes Ask an Archivist Day on October 4th, and Electronic Records Day on October 10th. We’ll look at these a little further this week. October is also Family History Month which pairs well with American Archives Month, so we’ll just go ahead and talk about that too!

October is American Archives Month 2015

Ask an Archivist Day (October 4th)

#AskAnArchivist Day was just on Wednesday. This is a day dedicated to utilizing Twitter to allow people to directly communicate with archivists near and far and ask questions about anything archives related. Archivists respond to everything from, “What does an Archivist do?” to “What is the coolest/oldest/weirdest thing in your collection?” and everything in between.


Electronic Records Day (October 10th)

Electronic Records Day is this Tuesday. Electronic records and their care are growing enormous rates and are an important part of most repositories. The Society of American Archivists (SAA) defines the term electronic record (also digital record), as data or information that has been captured and fixed for storage and manipulation in an automated system and that requires the use of the system to render it intelligible by a person.

A related term is machine-readable, which means, in a medium or format that requires a mechanical device to make it intelligible to humans. This is a large reason why archivists still use and like microfilm. It is eye-readable, meaning there is no need for any device or machine, or dependence on electricity to access the information it contains. 'Machine-readable' is commonly used to refer to digital computer data files, which may be stored on magnetic media or punch cards. However, phonograph records, audio cassettes, and LaserDiscs are examples of analog machine-readable formats (SAA). Technology evolves and changes so rapidly that preservation for many formats includes migrating the data from one format to another, and is a race against time. Oftentimes the formats still exist but the machine on which to access or play the information does not.
Electronic Records Day Logo 2017

Family History Month

Family History Month has been celebrated every October since 2001, when Congress first passed a resolution introduced by Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah, who wrote,

"By searching for our roots, we come closer together as a human family."

(Much like when we travel, the world becomes smaller.)
Some ways you could celebrate Family History Month include creating a cookbook with family recipes, preserving your family photographs, and encouraging cross-generational conversations or even interviews. Many people enjoy scrapbooking, although archivists generally cringe at the thought because of preservation concerns.

Of course, there is also genealogy! The link below has some great additional and specific information to help with family research that detail how you can begin researching your family tree with some relatively fast and easy first steps. They include: Google your ancestors; search inside books; check your DNA; download digitized military records; request a death certificate; interview a relative; order records on microfilm; join a genealogical or historical society; watch, listen, and learn from webinars and podcasts; genealogy groups on Facebook; use the library in person or online; update and backup your family information; read blogs on the subject  ;-)

...and visit your local archives!
Family History Month_FamilyTreeMagazine

Until Next Time!


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