I cannot believe this is my last week working in Special Collections and there are less than three weeks until graduation. My time up here has gone by so fast and I’m sad it’s coming to an end! I’ve made a lot of progress and learned a lot as well.
On Mondays, I’m finishing what I can on the PR collection. I’m still going through binders, labeling individual slide sheets with what the slides are, and then adding that on to a Word document. My hope is that the next person who works on the PR collection will understand my notes and continue what I’ve done or something related to it. It has been interesting to look at slides from the 80s and 90s, especially at clothing style and how that has changed.
On the other days, when Melanie is in, we work on the Soldiers and Civilians exhibit. She mentioned a lot of what we’ve done so far, so I’ll try not to repeat myself. However, working on it reminds me of how much effort goes into designing an exhibit and then implementing it. The objects originally in it had to removed and put back in their proper place, then we had to find the objects, pick a fabric to use, cut and install the fabric, rearrange the objects in the cases, find supports for some of them, craft fabric around some of the supports, and then give support to the old documents that are propped up. This week, we will have to work on labels to explain what the objects are. It’s a lot of work for even a small exhibit and it reminds me how much work Special Collections specifically and museum professionals more generally put into exhibits. I’ve really enjoyed working on this partner project though – two heads are better than one and Melanie always has good ideas! Hopefully we will be able to finish most of it before the end of the week!
This has been an amazing experience and I am so lucky to have gotten it! Working in an archives is definitely a career option for me. I’ll miss Gettysburg and working in Special Collections and Archives but I look forward to what the future holds.