Friends Newsletter Fall 2005
vol. 3 no. 2
Director's Column | Documentary
Discs | Wisconsin
Folksong Digital Collection | NHPRC
Regional Survey |
Narratives | Ja,
de elsker |
NHPRC Funds Survey of Regional Fieldwork Collections
If you have knowledge about past publicly-funded
fieldwork documentation from the Upper Midwest, we at CSUMC are
eager to speak with you.
Expanding on survey work already begun in Wisconsin
and border areas, we are now embarking on a one-year examination
of multi-format ethnographic materials from the Upper Midwest;
Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Wisconsin, and the Upper
Peninsula of Michigan. The information we gather will become the
foundation for an online catalog set to launch in the fall of
This one-year survey project is funded by the National
Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC), the
grant-making affiliate of the
National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). Our efforts
are an extension of the Access to Prior Folk Arts Projects in
the Upper Midwest, a two-year effort funded by the National
Endowment for the Arts and led by folklorist Janet C. Gilmore.
That project yielded information about more than 50 publicly funded
projects in Wisconsin and about a dozen detailed collection guides
that are expected to be available online yet this year.
The forthcoming catalog will complement those guides
by providing general information about a broad array of Upper
Midwestern collections. When available, the collection guides
will be accessible through links in the catalog entry (the guides
will also be accessible through an online collection of finding
aids from throughout Wisconsin). As with the previous project,
the regional survey is aimed at making it easier for the public,
especially the people featured in this documentation, to find
and use these important resources.
Already, we have been in touch with state folk arts
coordinators and other folklorists in the region to identify significant
collections. Later this fall we will send out an online survey
(print surveys are also available for those who want them) to
gather more detailed information. We will then identify a handful
of collections for further explorations and conduct site visits
to gather additional information.
CSUMC Archivist, Nicole Saylor, is coordinating
the project and Joia O'Brien, a student in the University of Wisconsin
School of Library and Information Studies, is working to shore
up information about various collections, starting with ones housed
at the Wisconsin Arts Board.
To focus our efforts we are working from a
list of past NEA-funded folk arts projects, yet we are interested
in all kinds of publicly funded field documentation. We are actively
making contact with regional folklorists and archivists, yet if
you have information you would like to share don't hesitate to
get in touch with us. You can contact Nicole Saylor at (608) 262-8180
or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Nicole Saylor is Folklorist and Archivist at
the Center for the Study of Upper Midwestern Cultures.