A Workshop in American Visual Culture and Literacy

The MARAC Blog

The Graphic Arts Department at the Library Company of Philadelphia will host a Visual Literacy workshop generously supported in part by the Center for American Art in July 2020.

Title: Urban In-sights: A Workshop in American Visual Culture and Literacy from the Eighteenth through the Early Twentieth Century

Dates: July 27-29, 2020

Location: Library Company of Philadelphia, 1314 Locust Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107

Application Deadline: March 27, 2020Extended to April 3, 2020

This three-day workshop aims to enhance the skills of historians, art historians, archivists, curators, and other university, library and museum professionals, as well as graduate students who use images to interpret American art, history, and culture. We seek to augment and strengthen participants’ ability to identify, “read,” and analyze graphic material, including prints, photographs, watercolors, paintings, ephemera, and other two-dimensional objects. As the program uses Philadelphia as a focal point, priority will be given to applicants interested…

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Harrisonburg Meeting Update

Dear MARAC members,

After a week of careful consideration and planning, MARAC’s Executive Committee has come to the decision to cancel our spring 2020 meeting in Harrisonburg, Virginia. We wish we did not have to take this action, but the safety of our members and our community are more important, and we could not risk contributing to the spread of COVID-19. 

So many people worked hard over the past year and a half to develop our spring 2020 meeting, and I specifically want to thank our Local Arrangements Committee (chaired by Tiffany Cole, Kate Morris, and Sarah Roth-Mullet) and our Program Committee (chaired by Elizabeth Novara and Vincent Novara). We were all looking forward to coming together with colleagues and enjoying the meeting that you created, and please know that we did not come to this decision lightly.

Information moving forward:

  1. All registration fees, workshop fees, tours, and tickets will be refunded over the next few weeks, and you do not need to contact our Administrator to receive a refund. We appreciate your patience as she processes the refunds.
  2. The hotel is cancelling room reservations. Please contact the hotel directly if you have any questions.
  3. We have consulted with the Program Committee co-chairs, and we are exploring options for sharing the women’s suffrage centennial and civil rights content in the program but no specific plans have been made at this time. 
  4. In accordance with our by-laws, we will hold our spring Business Meeting, but it will take place remotely. More details will be forthcoming.

Thank you for your understanding, and I hope everyone stays safe and healthy.

Sincerely,

Rachel M. Grove Rohrbaugh
MARAC Chair 2019-2020

Update for the Harrisonburg Spring Meeting

In light of the evolving situation around the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), we want to assure you that MARAC is monitoring the recommendations of state, federal and international health organizations.  The health and safety of our attendees at the Harrisonburg Conference is our utmost concern.

We are aware that many organizations are enacting travel bans and understand that may impact your ability to attend the conference. Per standard MARAC policy, full refunds will be given for refund requests submitted by April 1st. 

We will keep everyone apprised of any changes in the Harrisonburg Conference as the situation develops. If you have questions or need to adjust your registration, please contact Sara Predmore, MARAC Administrator, at administrator@marac.info or 717-713-9973.

LYRASIS Small and Diverse Archival Organization Needs Assessment Survey

LYRASIS has been hired by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) to develop a Small and Diverse Archival Organization Needs Assessment Survey. Thank you for your interest in the project—your support is critical to understanding the needs of small archives and supporting the field!

We believe that “small archives” are generally defined as those repositories with budgets of $100,000 or less and/or holdings of 1,000 cubic feet or less—these are not absolute figures—and repositories should not skip the survey if they have slightly larger budgets or holdings.

We recommend you review the form and your answers with your colleagues before beginning to answer the survey online; we hope to have one survey representing a single institution, and not multiple surveys from a single site. The survey is available at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/NHPRC2020

We are providing you with a PDF version of the survey to assist you in drafting answers and completing the survey prior to entering your information online. If you wish, you may print the survey NHPRC.pdf to review and discuss with your colleagues before completing online.

We estimate the survey will take no more than 20 minutes to complete. The survey is editable so that if you close or exit the browser before submitting your responses, you may finish later, but we encourage you to complete it in one sitting.

Confidentiality: Your responses are being collected and analyzed by LYRASIS, an independent, nonprofit, membership organization serving libraries, archives, and museums. They will be kept confidential. Only aggregate results will be reported. Please answer these questions to help us learn about Small and Diverse Archival Organization needs. To submit your answers, you must click on the “Done” button at the end of the survey form. Please submit the survey by March 25, 2020 at 5:00 Eastern time.

If you have any questions, please contact Leigh A. Grinstead at leigh.grinstead@lyrasis.org

Thank you for your support with this important project.

Support Increased Funding for NARA and NHPRC

Please consider contacting your representative in support of increased funding for NARA and NHPRC. NARA’s operating expenses budget in constant dollars has remained stagnant for over a decade, even as its responsibilities have increased. When adjusted for inflation, NARA’s budget has decreased by 10% since 2012. NARA today has fewer employees than it did in 1985.

Please click the link below for more information and guidance on contacting your representatives.

http://historycoalition.org/2020/03/02/ask-your-house-member-to-sign-letter-in-support-of-increased-funding-for-nara-and-nhprc/

– MARAC Steering Committee

A Workshop in American Visual Culture and Literacy

The Graphic Arts Department at the Library Company of Philadelphia will host a Visual Literacy workshop generously supported in part by the Center for American Art in July 2020.

Title: Urban In-sights: A Workshop in American Visual Culture and Literacy from the Eighteenth through the Early Twentieth Century

Dates: July 27-29, 2020

Location: Library Company of Philadelphia, 1314 Locust Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107

Application Deadline: March 27, 2020 Extended to April 3, 2020

This three-day workshop aims to enhance the skills of historians, art historians, archivists, curators, and other university, library and museum professionals, as well as graduate students who use images to interpret American art, history, and culture. We seek to augment and strengthen participants’ ability to identify, “read,” and analyze graphic material, including prints, photographs, watercolors, paintings, ephemera, and other two-dimensional objects. As the program uses Philadelphia as a focal point, priority will be given to applicants interested in using visual and material culture to explore urban topics.

For more information about the workshop, the syllabus, and an application, please visit: https://librarycompany.org/imperfect-history/vis-lit-workshop/

Harrisonburg Scholarships and Travel Awards

Meeting Scholarships and Travel Awards

There are three awards available for the Harrisonburg Virginia meeting:

1) Marsha Trimble Meeting and Travel Award ($400)

2) Joan Echtenkamp Klein Meeting and Travel Award ($250)

3) Karen A. Stuart Local History Collection Workshop & Conference Attendance Award

APPLICATION: Recipients may win only one award.  Applicants should submit the following:

1) Cover letter that includes:

  1. Awards for which you are applying (you can apply for all) – please note that applicants can apply for multiple awards but may only receive one per conference
  2. Statement of financial need
  3. Expected benefits of attending the conference (citing specific sessions or workshops of interest)

2) Resume

3) Letter of reference from a person with knowledge of the applicant’s work (sent directly to the MARAC Scholarship Committee Chair, Cindy Bendroth, via email at MARAC.Scholarship@gmail.com)

DEADLINE: March 13, 2020 for the Spring Harrisonburg, VA meeting

TO APPLY: Send a single PDF of the cover letter and resume to Cindy Bendroth , MARAC Scholarship Committee Chair, at MARAC.Scholarship@gmail.com. Letter of recommendation should be sent by the reference as a PDF directly to Cindy Bendroth, MARAC Scholarship Committee Chair, at MARAC.Scholarship@gmail.com. Please include MARAC Scholarship Application in the subject line.

More on the Karen A. Stuart Local History Collection Workshop & Conference Attendance Award

The Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference (MARAC) offers awards for one full or half-day workshop, and conference registration, including the Friday Luncheon and Saturday Breakfast. Please note this award does not cover any travel expenses, but only the registration costs outlined above.

Named in memory of Karen A. Stuart, a Library of Congress archivist who had been head librarian at the Maryland Historical Society, this award is expressly aimed at those associated with Local History Collections. Active with MARAC on the Publications Committee and also as Maryland Caucus Chair, Karen maintained a life-long interest in local history and genealogy, respecting and encouraging the scholarly practice of each. In her career, she assisted thousands of researchers investigating Maryland local history, and through her guidance she also impacted the careers of local history practitioners throughout the state. Karen loved local history so it is fitting that this award bears her name as MARAC supports the professional growth of others dedicated to the field.

QUALIFICATIONS: Individuals must currently be associated with a local history collection that is open to the public on a regular basis in the MARAC region. Volunteers as well as paid staff are eligible. Priority is given to local history collections located in the meeting’s host city for the purpose of networking opportunities, but will not exclude other applicants.