We had a good turnout at the San Francisco Main Public Library on October 10th for the program on “Treasures in Archives: Research Possibilities for Students, Teachers and Scholars.” All four speakers gave interesting presentations. Susan Goldstein spoke about the City Archives in the library’s San Francisco History Center. They have recently acquired huge amounts of records from city departments from the Police Department to the Redevelopment Agency to the Medical Examiner (coroner). They are digitizing files for Web access as quickly as they can, and she said some of these records are searchable on http://www.familysearch.org.
Marie Silva reported that the California Historical Society is also digitizing like mad and had recently started sharing historic photos on Flickr Commons. Their treasures include photos by Edward Curtis and Carleton Watkins, Gold Rush illustrated stationery, and the equivalents of green cards for Chinese laborers in the late 19th century.
Joseph Evans spoke about the San Francisco Symphony Archives, including photographs and papers pertaining to such notables as Yehudi Menuhin, Pierre Monteux, Seiji Ozawa, and Agnes Albert and recordings of the symphony’s Standard Hour radio broadcasts.
Chris Doan, Archivist for the Sisters of the Presentation, wins the prize for most attractive PowerPoint slide show. The Sisters’ archives document their roles in some of the earliest social services provided in San Francisco and their pioneering efforts in education, especially for women. Some of their materials are accessible through Flickr Commons and the Online Archive of California.