I started slowly, but I’m really picking up speed now, and pleased that I’m able to look at and think about the entire collection of materials while working. I’m arranging by family member (looked at Roe and decided that was most appropriate for these materials). I’m going through the folders like “programs” and taking out documents, putting them in folders for each person. I may also have a series for Lewiston ME and Woburn MA – not sure how the arrangement will end up, because I haven’t quite made it through all of the materials yet. It’s really fun work right now. My chair is surrounded by boxes on the floor.
Looking at the work plan Tom wrote up for this collection (back in 2005, when it was donated), I’m really surprised at his list of “items for possible de-accessioning”. For example, I don’t know why school notes would be discarded. Maybe I’m naïve to find everything so fascinating. Tom has said that the archives doesn’t have many collections like this – it doesn’t have much from the 20th century in general, and hardly any 20th century family collections. So why not include Bernard Scott’s school notes along with his diploma and graduation photo? I’ll ask.
The last box I’m going through is full of photographs, and Tom has indicated that these should be described at the item level. I’m looking at each photograph, writing something about it, and placing it in an empty box. Once I have an idea (and list of) everything in the box, I’ll decide (probably with Tom) what the next step is for these. So far the dates range from 1901 to 1958. From notes written on the backs of photographs, I’ve been able to fill in some empty spots on my Scott family tree, but I still haven’t figured out how the Nossamans are related to the Scotts.