Most local historical societies are under-funded and run by volunteers or part-time staff with little or no archival training or experience. The same can be said for those in local history rooms at public libraries. While eager to learn proper ways to preserve the items in their organization’s care, limited budgets prohibit their attendance at professional conferences and workshops. MARAC hopes to remedy that situation. At the Boston meeting back in March, the Steering Committee approved a new workshop and conference attendance award.
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.
Awards would be in the amount of either a full- or half-day workshop and conference registration, whatever that cost may be at the time of application. Conference registration would include the costs of the Friday luncheon and Saturday breakfast. Award would not include travel or hotel expense.
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 would be eligible. Priority would be given to local history collections located in the meeting’s host city for the purpose of networking opportunities, but would not exclude other applicants.
Applicants would submit a current resume, a cover letter describing their organization and demonstrating financial need, a statement of the expected benefits of attending, and a letter of reference from a person with knowledge of the applicant’s work.
Deadline is August 20th for the Roanoke meeting.
For more information on the Karen Stuart Award or the other scholarships available, please see the website: http://www.marac.info/marac-scholarships