Founding the ALA Archives, 1966-1973

On November 11, 1966, Headquarters Librarian Ruth White wrote to Associate Executive Director Alphonse Trezza:

The archives for ALA are now stored in many places. There has never been an established policy for retention and disposition of ALA and divisional correspondence and publications. Neither has there been a systematic program for collection of archival material. In 1949 the Committee on A.L.A. Archival and Library Materials made a detailed report, but there is no record of action being taken on the report. Certainly the recommendations have been carried out only spasmodically, if at all. As stated at the beginning, the result is that many divisions have their own archives, some archival material is in Central Files, some if in the library, and some is in the hands of officers, past officers and past headquarters…

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New Accessions at the Archives

Interns Gabrielle Barr and Lisa Lorenzo hard at work to preserve ALA history! Photo courtesy of American Libraries.

The ALA Archives has been busy working on large accessions of records sent to us by American Libraries magazine and the ALA Library.  These new accessions will total up to 40 bankers boxes once all of them have been shipped over, and the archives staff is excited to receive them.

The archives staff is currently working on boxes sent to us from the ALA Library.  These records are a rich collection of photograph vertical files that not only document the history of the ALA, but of the librarian profession itself.  There are of course photos and negatives of various ALA conferences, events, and staff, but there are also photographs of bookmobiles, libraries, exhibits, various library technologies, and even book trucks! Continue reading “New Accessions at the Archives”