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Archives Month

Each October the nation celebrates our country’s rich historical collections. Programs and activities are held at archives and libraries statewide. MHRAB and the Society of Mississippi Archivists (SMA) are co-sponsoring a poster to celebrate Archives Month and many Mississippi institutions will present a variety of events. The poster promoting Mississippi Archives Month 2014 will commemorate the 50th anniversary of Freedom Summer and encourage all Mississippians to learn more about the Civil Rights Movement in Mississippi by visiting local archives, libraries, museums, and historical societies. Archives Month activities in Mississippi are supported by funding provided by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

For more information about Archives Month, see the Society of Mississippi Archivists Web site and the Council of State Archivists Web site.

2014 Workshops

MHRAB will join SMA and the Archival Training Collaborative (ATC) in sponsoring one workshop this fall. The Basics of Processing Archival Records, a workshop introducing participants to the methods and best practices archivists use to arrange, preserve, and create usable finding aids for collections of all shapes and sizes, will be presented by Mona Vance-Ali (Columbus-Lowndes Public Library) and Derek Webb (Mississippi University for Women) in Jackson on October 28, 2014. Participants will engage in hands-on activities and come away with a practical knowledge base to begin processing archival records. To receive a registration form or more information, visit the SMA Web site at or contact Derek Webb at 662-241-7601.

The Society of Mississippi Archivists (SMA) and the Archival Training Collaborative (ATC) offer workshops occasionally. To learn about workshops in the region, visit the SMA Web site and the ATC Web site.

Awards Program

By recognizing exemplary achievements, MHRAB hopes to inspire others to make similar contributions. These biennial awards honor efforts to identify, preserve, and provide access to Mississippi’s historical records. Awards are presented for Archival Program DevelopmentDocumenting Mississippi’s HistoryUsing Historical Records in Grades K-12, and Using Historical Records in Undergraduate Classes. MHRAB will present its 2015 Awards for Excellence at an Awards Luncheon during the Biennial Meeting of the Society of Mississippi Archivists in April.

Nominations for the 2015 Awards Program will be accepted from October 1, 2014 to January 23, 2015.

Nomination Form, Awards Criteria and Eligibility

For further information, contact Forrest Galey at 601-576-6872 or by email.

Other Projects

County Records Inventory Project

For the past three years MHRAB and MDAH have sponsored a county records inventory and technical assistance project throughout the state. Led by MDAH Local Government Records Officer Tim Barnard, archivists have inventoried the pre-1920 county records; evaluated the storage and preservation of the records; and provided customized recommendations and consultations to county officials. In 2010, the project worked in Mississippi’s fourteen territorial counties (Adams, Amite, Claiborne, Franklin, Greene, Hancock, Jackson, Jefferson, Lawrence, Marion, Pike, Warren, Wayne, and Wilkinson). In 2011 and 2012 the project focused on the twenty-nine counties formed between 1818 and 1833 (Attala, Carroll, Choctaw, Clarke, Copiah, Covington, Hinds, Holmes, Jasper, Jones, Kemper, Lauderdale, Leake, Lowndes, Madison, Monroe, Neshoba, Noxubee, Oktibbeha, Perry, Rankin, Scott, Simpson, Smith, Tallahatchie, Washington, Winston, Yalobusha, and Yazoo). By June 2013, the staff expects to have completed work in ten more counties (Forrest, George, Harrison, Jefferson Davis, Lamar, Lincoln, Newton, Pearl River, Stone, and Walthall). All completed inventories are now available on the MDAH Web site, For more information about the records inventories and local government records in Mississippi, please contact Tim Barnard at 601.576-6894 or This project is supported by supplemental funding from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

This project, known as the Territorial Records Inventory Project (TRIP) in its earlier phase, was featured in the February 2010 issue of the Mississippi History Newsletter.

Collaborative Projects

William Grant Still: Inspired to Inspiring

In 2009 MHRAB co-sponsored the exhibit William Grant Still: Inspired to Inspiring, which was shown at thirteen locations around the state.

Picturing America, Reflecting Mississippi

In 2010 MHRAB opened Reflecting Mississippi, a web-based exhibit of Mississippi images and suggested teaching activities, to serve as a companion piece to the National Endowment for the Humanities Picturing America initiative. The zip file of Mississippi images and information is available for download.

Both projects were co-sponsored by the Mississippi Department of Archives and History, the Mississippi Arts Commission, the Mississippi Humanities Council, and the Mississippi Library Commission.

Connecting to Collections

MHRAB co-sponsored a statewide online survey of archives, libraries, museums, and historical sites to determine overall needs of cultural collections repositories, to allow better training opportunities and strengthen relationships between cultural collections institutions, and facilitate planning of activities for the celebration of Mississippi’s bicentennial in 2017. Tom Clareson of LYRASIS conducted on-site surveys at several institutions, managed an online survey, and analyzed the state-wide data. The survey was funded by a Connecting to Collections grant from the Institute for Museum and Library Services.