On Saturday, September 24th, I had the wonderful opportunity to help community members learn how to preserve their family treasures. The Association of Hawaiʻi Archivists partnered with the Society of American Archivists student chapter to invite students to be presenters at this vital workshop on the west side of Oʻahu. Hawaiʻi is famous for its amazing weather. We live in paradise, however, with our subtropical climate there are unique challenges for community members wishing to preserve their papers, books, photos, and other cultural artifacts.
I was fortunate to team with three fellow classmates and SAAsc members who I have ginormous amounts of respect for: Jennifer Magdaloyo, Keala Richard, and Ellie Seaton. Together, we tackled the content of Session 1: Mālama Palapala, which covered physical environment, pests, the care of papers, books, photos, and other artifacts such as feathers, kapa, and ʻumeke/calabash. As aspiring archivists we had all studied under the wise and skillful tutelage of Deborah Dunn in LIS 619 - Preservation Management. (Keala and I were lucky enough to have Debbie for LIS 620 - Conservation Management, as well). Each of us parsed out the topics comprising our 90-minute presentation, and created all the content for our topics. The topics I selected were: pest identification and prevention, identification of types of books in the home one might preserve, and types of books commonly sold today, and photo preservation and storage. Debbie graciously agreed to help us run through the presentation, made suggestions, and then (bless her heart) she sat through it again! She was very happy with it the 2nd time around, and so was I. Having her give feedback was integral to the success of our portion of the workshop.
The audience was a mixture of different ethnicities from all over the island. They were primarily middle-aged to senior citizen, and actively took notes and asked questions throughout. It was a pleasure to be speaking at Leeward Community College, which is the CC I lived closest to (and where I started my college endeavors) back in the day! I felt really comfortable speaking to the crowd because they were really interested in learning what they could do with their possessions at home.
I found the entire experience to be very meaningful and special. We were flattered to have people ask us if we'd consider doing another workshop. Some members thanked us and let us know the community really needs workshops like these. By far, this service event required many hours of preparation, far beyond previous volunteer activities I've participated in. It was partially for that reason that this was also one of the most enjoyable, however, being told we were able to help the people who came was the best part. It was so cool to see people motivated to start preserving their own collections. Mahalo to AHA and the SAAsc for allowing me to present, and Mahalo to the community members for spending their Saturday with us and being such an awesome crowd!
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On July 28, 2015, The Association of Hawaii Archivists (AHA), held a site tour at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Daniel K. Inouye Regional Center. The facility, is located on Ford Island, and it's an impressive structure, that repurposed two old hangars, by linking them together with a central complex built between them. It is a Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) Gold building.
There were beautiful exhibits featuring marine wildlife and coastal environments near the entrance, and one of the first things we were shown, was a giant white sphere hanging from the ceiling, called Science on a Sphere (SOS). Patty performed a demonstration on how they use it as an educational tool. She could track the movement of weather systems, as well as flight paths, and also fun stuff they do with the kids, like make it look like a giant eyeball.
The library is on the first floor and run by one librarian named Ani. Her primary patrons are scientists, so she does not do much reference work, since many of the scientists already come to her with specific resources they'd like to obtain for their research. Ani said she does a lot of document delivery for these requests, and also works with updating their database (they use Oracle) and digitization. It was interesting to hear a federal librarian speak about her experiences, which made me realize yet another interesting area of librarianship! Another, separate repository, was located upstairs: The International Tsunami Information Center, which housed pamphlets and ephemera, books, maps, etc. and it was interesting to see pamphlets in multiple languages with different target audiences. Both are open to the public.
At the end of the tour, Chad, a Marine Biologist shared some stories and information about the work they do, and in particular, how the public can help when they spot a monk seal, by calling NOAA right away, and not trying to assist the animal themselves. He said hooks that get caught in a monk seal's throat are one of the most difficult types of surgical procedures to perform.
To report stranded / entangled marine mammals:1-888-256-9840
I am really happy AHA extends these amazing opportunities to its members.
On Saturday, March 28th, 2015, I was thrilled to have the opportunity to visit the Scottish Rite Cathedral as a member of the Association of Hawaii Archivists. I had no idea there was a library inside this beautiful building, nor did I really know much about the cathedral, except that it was an impressive and mysterious building. Along with the cathedral itself, we also toured the Masonic Library located within. Our guide, William "Pete" Holsomback, gave an excellent and fascinating tour of the facilities, patiently fielded many questions from the group, and provided us with a lot of interesting historical info. Adding to the mystique surrounding Masons in general, we learned the group is not Scottish nor is it connected to Scotland in any way. In Hawaii, one of their most visible works, is the Shriners Hospital for Children in Honolulu. There were many interesting photographs, memorabilia, and books. They also publish some pamphlets and books of their own available for sale. Interesting to note for any library buffs out there: the library is open to the public.
I wish I'd written this post sooner, like right after the site visit, but I didn't have my website up and running at the time. I will post more photos from the day below.
Dropping Mad Library Science!
Here is where I write about everything library and archives related going on.