MENDOCINO Co., 2/24/21 — The Historical Society of Mendocino County, a local non-profit dedicated to preserving a rich collection of archives of Mendocino County history, is planning for the future. This week the organization launching a crowdfunding campaign to support an long-term digitization project to preserve the nearly one million pieces and better share them with future generations.
The Historical Society serves a a repository for a variety of different eras and communities in Mendocino County history, and the digitization project will both preserve the materials items in the collection, and allow digital versions to be more easily shared with history buffs and reseachers both near and far. Digitizing the materials will also improve access to the existing archives, as the digital records are more easily searchable and indexed. The project will require the construction of a scanning station at the society’s headquarters in Ukiah, and thousands of hours of labor over many years. The crowding funding campaign has a goal of $25,000.
More details about the project from the Historical Society can be found below, and you can contribute to the campaign here:
The Historical Society of Mendocino County (located in Ukiah, CA) is a nonprofit that has been collecting, preserving, and sharing the diverse history of Mendocino County in California since 1956. In 2016, they built their archive to house the growing collection consisting of nearly 1 million photographs, newspapers, documents, records, maps, and more. Their collection is currently being archived from the ground up and part of this process is digitizing the collection.
One of the benefits of digitization is digital copies can be referenced for research and viewing. This prevents further handling of the original documents and prolongs their life. It will also streamline research and lower the cost to the public. Another benefit is that digital copies of the collection can be stored off-site for an added layer of protection in case of natural disaster or system failure. Wildfires in recent years have made this a pressing matter. Finally, digitalization of the collection means greater accessibility of their records to the public, both on-site in their research facility, and online through a collection database they will build on their website.
To accomplish this project they are building a scanning station that is capable of taking high resolution scans of both large and small documents. This project will require thousands of hours of scanning and data entry into their museum database and they are hoping to raise funds to staff this important project.
The project will take many years and their online database will be the final step of this project. In the short term, each day that goes by will mean more local history being digitally protected for our future generations.