Archive Update 2023

Exciting news from South Phoenix Oral History Project! Greetings friends of South Phoenix!

I am thrilled to share with you some updates about our growing archive, which is slated for a Grand Opening in Fall 2023. Take a look at our before and after shots below.

Timeline of Events

Renovation: 2019-2023

We began with about fifty boxes of uncategorized newspaper articles, photographs, documents, and other records in a dusty awkward meeting space loosely titled “The History Room.” A deteriorating empty trophy case took up most of the space, along with unusable secretarial desks built into the wall and a giant conference table. We started by cataloguing, indexing, and sorting all of the material.

Before: The History Room in 2019. Volunteer indexing. Image by Summer Cherland

Then, we proposed new furniture more akin to storage, preservation, and access. We decided on standing-level counters, so that students and researchers could move about the space freely. We also chose many filing drawers, some cabinets, and several viewable shelves to inspire interest from the public.

During: The History Room in 2022. After renovation 2. Image by Summer Cherland

Materials/Collections: 2019-present

Our signature collection, SMCC and South Phoenix Memories combines over fifty years of material relevant to the college, its founding, and the surrounding community. We also house two personal papers, and we are recruiting more.

As of May 2023, we are in process. The room is underway, but accessible by appointment!

During: The History Room in 2023. Chantel Freed searching photographs 2. Image by Summer Cherland

Advisory Committee: 2023

In 2023, we will have the first meeting of our community advisory board, who will help establish guidelines for collection, preservation, outreach, and access. Members include SMCC faculty, South Phoenix business owners and leaders, archivists, librarians, and students.

Goals: 2023

We have several goals. Some are mission-based, and others are more concrete. They will be approved by the Advisory Committee summer 2023.

  • Student-led initiative to capture and preserve the history of South Phoenix
  • Preservation: Collect and maintain historic records of the South Phoenix community, including photographs, manuscripts, documents, and newspaper clippings.
  • Access: Invite researchers from near and far to learn more about our community.
  • Grand Opening: We are slated to open to the public in Fall 2023.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s