Executive Director’s Message

From the Executive Director features news and reflections on the work of PHMC by its chief administrator.

A significant amount of material with historical value is continually reclaimed in a State the size of Pennsylvania. While ideally these manuscripts, photographs, and maps should be placed in depositories to be preserved and pro­cessed by archivists, the reality of the situation is such that a good many institutions acquire historical documents. Unfortunately, many of the collecting libraries and his­torical societies lack the resources to hire trained pro­fessional staff. While their acquisition efforts are essential and praiseworthy, the Historical and Museum Commission has long recognized the need to disseminate technical in­formation to dedicated individuals in this field.

An initial step in solving this problem was taken this spring when the Commission, with a grant from the Nation­al Historical Publications and Records Commission, began a series of three Archival Techniques Workshops. The first session was organized for the southeastern and central parts of the State and held in Harrisburg on May 19, 1978. A western regional workshop was held in Pittsburgh on June 9 [1978] and the final meeting is scheduled for Wilkes-Barre on September 15 [1978]. These gatherings represent important first steps toward the extension of archival expertise in the preservation of textual, non-textual, and cartographic records. The Commission intends to continue this educative work in the future, for the attempt to salvage and maintain valuable historical records is a continual concern.

William J. Wewer
Executive Director