tv Discussion with Librarian of Congress and National Archivist on... CSPAN September 3, 2018 6:42pm-8:07pm EDT
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>> how have you been? >> we call ourselves partners in crime. >> we are. we're not going to talk about the crime part of it. we're just going to talk about the partner part. >> well, what's been really interesting since i've been in the position at the library of congress is the fact that people ask me well, what does the national archives do? >> what does that mean? >> what do you do? you're at the library of congress. >> there's a confusion about the histories and role of each of the institutions. and i've learned a lot in that, the declaration of independence, the bill of rights and was there a third? >> we call it the constitution.
[laughter] >> that were held by the library of congress and that type of thing. could you -- >> you got an earlier start than we did. it wasn't until the 1930s that the united states got serious about its records. it was franklin roosevelt who was passionate about records that we actually created the -- he signed the legislation that created the national archives. the charters that carla is referring to had been in the custody of the state department and then at the library of congress. when the archives building was built, a beautiful tabernacle was created for the declaration of independence. doors opened in 1935, but the librarian of congress refused to release the declaration. [laughter] >> and i've held that against you ever since. [laughter] >> i wasn't born yet but i knew this was going to happen.
>> it wasn't until harry truman came into office that he kind of laid down the law with the new librarian of congress that they really needed to deliver that document where it belongs. so as carla describes it, it was a really military ceremony with tanks and military people lining the steps of the -- and she claims -- she always describes it as a grab for the declaration. [laughter] >> literally -- >> it was a transfer of the document to its rightful place. >> and we have photographs, photographs of the people -- the tanks with the -- what are those? yes, right there waiting. you can imagine the curators and librarians thinking well maybe it is time. who was the librarian of congress then? do you remember? >> oh, i forget. someone here must remember. >> someone here. winston is here.
he's my check on all the -- >> you were here. [laughter] >> what was the -- >> that was the start of the kind of clarification of rules and really divide up things. >> the archives was created to collect and protect and make available the records of the united states government. so anything that was created by the government, so the question, the natural question is, what about the stuff that was created before 1934 when the legislation was signed? a lot of it is in our custody. some of it is at the library of congress. since the materials were stored in attics and basements all over town, a lot of it was lost through the fire and theft and flood. but what we have now is a dividing line between everything the government creates and that's me and everything they don't create, which is you. >> and there are times when i'm glad you are you.
[laughter] >> i have learned that. >> and there are times when i wish i was you. [laughter] >> i would describe it another way too, that for instance, truman and his official records might be with the truman library, and i'd really like to get into those things too, with the presidential libraries, and some of the letters that he wrote to his family, so the person so where you might -- the things that the person, the diaries, all of the things like that, the personal part and the personal life of an official might be at the library of congress. and so the papers of 23 presidents from george washington to coolidge are at the library of congress. we were both in starksville,
mississippi. >> yes, starksville, mississippi. >> abraham lincoln collection as well. that library is in starksville. >> in mississippi, can you believe it? >> and we were there. >> we were. it turns out more than 200 presidential sites in the country, people who have some kind of responsibility for some aspect of a president's life, and they are all meeting in washington in august. >> and what's interesting about the presidential libraries, the library of congress has custody of the actual papers and documents of ulysses s. grant, and what some of the presidential libraries do is what they will collect and make copies of things from different collections, about a president
and -- >> that's right, yes. >> and that's how some of the presidential libraries have been established >> so when franklin roosevelt created the national archives, he also decided to have a presidential library. so technically his was the first. i'm convinced he was a closet archi archivist, he was passionate about his papers. he spent a lot of time hiring the first archivist, and spent a lot of time supporting that first archivist robert conner in his work as he was trying to figure out where the records are and more importantly to convince the agency heads to give up the records because that wasn't something people were interested in doing. so roosevelt created his own library. herbert hoover decided he wanted a library at that point. but this was all voluntary. it was all voluntary up until 1972 when thanks to president nixon, and his thoughts that he owned his own records, that legislation was passed, the
presidential records act which made it government property. so 1972 is kind of our marker for you have to donate -- you have to give your papers to the national archives. >> and so the role really became official then. >> yeah. >> and then the other departments, and that's another confusion that happens sometimes. >> separate set of laws. presidential records act of 1972. the federal records act was created much earlier than that. and that guides all of the records management activities for the executive branch, to all of the 275 executive branch cabinet level and agencies and departments. >> what about congressional records? >> we provide by a gentleman's agreement, way back when, we provide courtesy storage for the records of congress and service them. they are the records of
congress, but they aren't at the library of congress. [laughter] >> and i want all of the people watching and listening to realize the joy of working with your colleagues, some of which you have known -- is that you have this kind of friendly kind of historical, whatever competition. so when you talk about -- >> and some grudges. >> and grudges. [laughter] >> so when you talk about -- and i know you have seen that movie "national treasure". >> yes. >> the library of congress has that first printing that just said john hancock on it. >> there wouldn't have been that first printing if those original signers didn't sign something. >> see? [laughter] >> which i have. [laughter] >> right, right, okay.
it's okay. it's okay. and the gettysburg address that he took on the field. >> that's right. >> the contents of abraham lincoln's pockets the night he was assassinated. >> i know. >> and four locks of thomas jefferson's hair. [laughter] >> just saying. [laughter] >> so it is kind of fun to have this kind of historical back and forth. oh, there's tony marks, he's got a few artifacts too at new york public. >> yes -- [laughter] >> there are a few things over there. let's not even bring up hamilton; right? okay, let's bring up hamilton. [laughter] >> how did you pull that off? >> it's through the new york
public library actually. tommy kale, the director of hamilton, was a member of the library for the performing arts visiting committee and he and i became good friends, and when we decided to honor ron and lin manuel -- >> oh was that really good. >> we got all three of them in the house. >> we are not going to name drop. >> not at all. >> we're going to let that go. >> -- signed at valley forge by george washington. >> and we just digitized the last note to his wife. [laughter]
>> so much fun. >> -- to the government outlining her poverty asking for support for from the federal government. >> and we're finishing digitizing all of her correspondence for the rest of her life when she -- [inaudible] -- his reputation. we can go on and name a historical figure. if they are official, that's when you have them, that's right >> what are we doing together in the digitization? >> we are doing some cool stuff. >> we are working on a terrific exhibit with the dnf tracing the french role in the american revolution, working with -- i think you guys are involved the new york public library. library of congress. >> and the dnf just in case people -- >> and another project with the
british library, george -- >> the two georges. >> the two georges about beginnings of this country. king george and our king george. >> we're calling it the two georges because it is their george, george iii and george washington. and the cool thing about it is that they were reading some of the same books at the same time. they had similar interests, and so it will be a joint exhibit with the royal archives. >> that's right. >> windsor. we didn't go to the wedding. but -- [laughter] >> our research timing didn't coincide. but the royal archives, kings college and william and mary, and so that type of collaboration happens all the time, and we keep -- and we mention tony marks and new york public because in terms of a public library, it has a collection that complements some of the things that we're
involved in, new york public is a library that we work closely with in different ways, so the burning question that people have asked me already, and it came up at a session, one of the sessions, what do we do and how do we deal with technology going forward? some of the historical records now are going to be in a different format. >> they already are. >> and you've been really on the forefront of that, with your -- you're putting a hard stop on collecting and -- >> i'm sure you have read in the press about the president's reform plan that was issued last week. if you go to page 103, you will see a two-page description of the national archives contribution to that reform plan. what it spells out is a message that we have already delivered to the agencies that we are no
longer accepting paper at the end of 2022. they have until 2022 to get their paper to us, that's in their custody now that is scheduled to be transferred, but after 2022, it's digital only. so the agencies have already been prepared for this. they have already -- many of them -- 85% of them about have been already digitizing their records. so we're in pretty good shape that way. but most of -- but the most important factor is that those agencies are already creating their records electronically and they have been for some time. so this is not, you know, a great surprise, great shock, and just a data point, since i know there are some people who are confused about what's going on with the obama -- the planning for the obama library, it turns out that more than 80% of the
obama records are born digitally. there's no paper equivalent. so the plan is with the agreement of the obama foundation, that we will create the first all digital presidential library. the money that would have been invested in creating a physical facility, in chicago, is going to be devoted to digitization of that 15% that isn't already digital. and that's, you know, a very different model for presidential libraries. it's a very different model for how we deliver information, service presidential records, but it's an exciting opportunity for us to rethink a whole new way of communicating, connecting with our users. >> are you going to be borrowing some techniques from museums and things in terms of how you display -- >> the plan is that the foundation has already designed
and will build a museum, and we will loan to them artifacts because the presidential libraries are a combination of paper, film, photographs and lots of artifacts, gifts from foreign heads of state, gifts from the american people, more macaroni pictures than you have ever seen in your life >> the things from children, hopefully? >> oh, yeah, yeah, every one of the presidential libraries has this kind of collection. so those are the kinds of things that will end up in the museum part of the -- >> what about letters from young people? >> that's part of -- those are all digitized now. >> oh, that will be very cool, see all the letters and i know that's a big -- >> that's important to me because when i became the archivist and met with the directors of the presidential libraries for the first time, the director of the kennedy handed me a copy of a letter that a kid wrote to the president asking for information about the proposed peace corps and it's a letter from me.
>> is a former children's librarian i need to figure out how i can top this wonderful thing that you do with children and archive. the sleepover by the constitution. [laughter] in that wonderful place, there they are, it's nice and they're spooky and they're having fun. then, the next morning, and i have personally people tell me this, you know the archivists of the united states makes pancakes for the kids. [laughter] so, don't worry, we have thomas jefferson's recipe for macaroni and cheese. i'm trying to get david's.
>> and this is really true. because i said, okay maybe we could make it a progressive. he's just saying it, david right? don't you think that would be neat? so we have a new gang of three, in other have gangs of four, five, and eight. so we have the new gang in town, gang of three. and the smithsonian in the archives in the library and we actually met and talk about this. what if the kids started out at the natural history museum. >> all that stuff. >> or they slept there, so, we are trying to figure this out. i think the evening should be with us with the macaroni and cheese. >> i think aaron space already does a sleepover.
but you did mention the fact that david -- that's important thing. that is the close working relationship the three of us have which is unlike anything. i've been there for almost nine years and it's the first time the three institutions have gotten serious about working together. >> it's fun, because when i invited the two david's to the library of congress for the luncheon. of course, our curators and librarians put out the good silver, we call it. and they are in there. we knew that this david was an opera boss. so we had one of our music librarians bring out these wonderful opera things. >> it was the first printing of the first libretto for an opera.
which i had never even heard of. >> he had never heard of it, then david is a jazz fanatic. so, we brought out the straight horn things. and then, the curator was so good, he knew opera and jazz. and he saying. so we had the tickets and all that thing, it was very nice. so, this curator had a piece by jellyroll morton who is known for jets. it bridge the two types of music because jellyroll morton did an operetta or did something and he just slid right into that. now i think we can reveal this, they wanted to get the card of the curator. so there is some poaching.
>> he wanted to steal the curator right there. >> right in front of me. >> are you happy here? >> i'm happy. corsi's happy. and i had to talk to the guy afterwards are you happy? [laughter] but, it's really a lot of fun when you start joining forces. >> so the pressure is that were doing the next luncheon the pressure is already on about what we are going to show you. >> that's the cool stuff. because women's suffrage is coming up. you have a lot of things in the smithsonian is doing an exhibit. you mention the air and space museum, you have for the right brother some pretty cool things. >> the patent, the library of congress has the actual papers
david mccullough did an actual book really based on that. then the smithsonian has the plane. so, we are working to see what are some of the things we have that each of us can bring together for special exhibits that really put things and put something about it in our own institution. and the smithsonian we are very pleased. we went have ceased to purchase the first known photo. tubman. it will be exhibited in the news. we digitized it and it will be on exhibit at the new museum of african-american history. [applause] it's always fun, will then when tony comes to play a puts his
thing down here, and all of that. but, just getting this community of history and culture seems to be growing. we worked together for that. >> are what has surprised you about working in washington? >> all. and tony is over here going -- i still live in baltimore. >> that says it all. >> i commute. it's really interesting, because i have lived in when i lived in chicago there are so many commuters that came in. people would come in from gary, indiana every day. the idea that the people come in
from different states in different places every day. i have taken the train now and we have just seen how many people come into the city and it's like elastic. i did not get a sense of that before. you go in and think people are living there and there's an energy there. you just feel a pace and it just changes. >> and there are a lot of young people. >> and they all walk fast and they have two or three devices. >> they're all passionate about what they're doing.
it's rewarding the brain power there is something. >> so the library of congress, you probably are ready do it. >> another idea view stolen from us. >> were going to talk safely that is really cool. here you have come in washington, d.c. literally some of the brightest, smartest young people you'll ever meet. some look like they're 12 years old. they are policy or something, so, we have tried to think how can we get those young millennial's engaged, they are so smart. so we have had scavenger hunts in jeopardy and some really cool
things to engage them. we have libations sometimes like that. yes, thomas jefferson was a wine connoisseur. we work it. to get these young people engage. , because they want to still learn. so they will sit and listen, they want to meet people, one young congressional staffers said, our salaries, so this is like date night. >> okay, just go and do something with film in the summer, free popcorn, about
that? with the machine, it's not just. >> oh my gosh, with the machine, too. so i think we might have you little bit on that. >> no, i don't think so. >> not fundraising. >> this is an idea i took from the young lions, similar kind of group really interested in the library. it's been in existence for 25 years or so. so i took that idea to the new york to the national archives, we have a similar group we are working with the young founder society trying to engage them in
the life of the national archives. this is folks were drawn in different directions. and the focus of the challenge. >> we do not have a name yet. we are working on that. i like young founders. >> i am saying, that's a good thing. we are working on how we can get this group, and is going to be really is the same group of kids were young people that will be going to these types of things. >> to have any literature you would like me to share with my group? >> let's talk about your citizen archivists. because that we took almost verbatim and made it citizen historian because the transcription of things. >> when i was hired in 2009 by president obama, on his first in office he told his senior staff
that the government doesn't have all the answers we need to figure out ways to engage the american public was solving some of the problems. i took that to heart. i worked with the staff to think about ways we could engage the american public and the work that we do. the result was the creation of the citizen archivists-four. it has a number of activities that you can help us do our work, taking photographs, identifying its been fairly standard of identifying people in photographs. i think the centerpiece that i'm most excited about is the transcription project that we have going on. we have loaded thousands of records, kids are not being talk cursive and i have billions of
records and cursive so were disenfranchise future generations because they cannot read this stuff. you people all over the country and world helping us transcribe in this archivist dashboard activity. that's a way where you are trying to engage the public into our work. >> and we just put citizen historian and took it. the model is so great. there is the same meet at the library of congress, susan b anthony's papers, all these people people, frederick douglass, some of the things and cursive that literally young people and because of the writings, sometimes other people cannot read these documents. the library of congress is launching citizen storm and we
even references it started with the national archives. we want people who are doing want to think about doing the other. >> were also working together on our history hub site where reference folks are providing reference service to anyone who is a particular reference question. we are fielding and sharing information from our own collections to solve the research needs of the people who are using history hub. and we are bringing the smithsonian on board with that. i noticed your folks are at the national archives last week for an edit a thought, we are working together on wikipedia. >> i also want to share what i know we have talked about a little bit, the concern about history going forward and
records being created digitally and how we deal with storage issues, security, technology keeping up in the future and there is real concern at times that future historians, how will they get these items as histories being made in a different format. >> it is the one thing, of all the things that keep me up at night. it is ensuring that our mandate is to ensure that people have access to the records in perpetuity. we are barely able to guarantee that in paper. being able to guarantee the with the electronic environment is our biggest challenge. the back my head i always have the work that nicholson baker did in a book entitled double fold. he chastised us for microfilm he
all of the early american newspapers and throwing out the originals and leaving us in a situation where in the united states we did not have copies of our own newspapers. because microfilm m microfilm was so poorly created. and disintegrated in some cases. but lots of reels, no quality control. images were not perfect. the worst thing was that many of the new york carol was the first newspaper to introduce color into the comics in sunday additions. the newspaper microfilm is black and white. so, we lost a whole sense of our history and a flawed project. i am happy to report that
nicholson baker, the month that the book came out nicholson baker's book came out, the library and community has circled the wagons and nicholson is our enemy. and i was opening a new storage facility at duke university and i needed a speaker. i invited nate to be the speaker. here's this warehouse of paper and we had dinner, nick had raise the money from borrowing from his in-laws to buy from the british library to only paper copies that existed. nick bought them and set up a warehouse in new hampshire. he became a newspaper library that was providing photographs and things in scanned images. i invited nick to be the speaker. we had dinner, i told him that
when you get tired of playing newspaper library, this wonderful new facility to be a great place to house them. so they are at two university now, thank god. so when i was thinking about what we're dealing with this electronic information so that we don't get into a position where we have lost everything because of security things, technology, all kinds of issues. >> in the security thing, that becomes even more of an issue with the technology. the library of congress has storage modules and they are modules like amazon and what those warehouses look like. in fort mead, military base is going to take the electronic environment in terms of security
and making both transitions as technology progresses, there's the fiscal part that is a major challenge to. >> exactly. we're doing work with the industry to educate them about what the needs are. around tools for my case the agencies need to create and maintain their records, the situation in the federal government is very much the situation i remember from university settings where every faculty was able to go off and build their own system or buy something off the shelf. there is no enterprise approach to technology. that is clearly the description of the federal government,. >> each department has its own
way of dealing with it. >> the state of information technology infrastructure is not where it should be. that's another issue outlined in the reform plan, another point that in support of the work we are trying to do. >> what about the resources? >> well, the technology has been very supported in terms of the technology effort in bringing the library of congress to modern and efficient. that has been very heartening coming in and see not having that support. you know that you have to maintain it and also the staffing that you need to have that digital strategy is going to be able to look forward.
so we just hired a digital strategy manager and we will do more with that. we have to. we have to look out and look back at the same time. it's a fun time. it's getting a lot of people from the technology sector that are coming into the library to work and help us try to solve these things. that has brought some energy and cross-fertilization that has been exciting for us. >> that is something we should put on our agenda for the three of us. we even had, he hired someone from great britain, the bbc that is a technology digital group group. we had him come to the library of congress and talk to staff about what the public is doing,
we are a little jealous of some of the stuff. they are doing a lot of cool things. so just this cross-fertilization between institutions, between types of libraries and archives has been helpful for us. and to say that we have common problems and what can we do together. we have the young professionals, we have the children come are we working on things for seniors? >> things for seniors? >> oh good. [laughter] >> we are planning sleep over. [laughter] >> well, we have a wonderful partnership with aarp i must say that have supported book festival and some other things. >> we have a lot of support from
them, also. >> i know you do, but what can we do to engage seniors? as i matured, that becomes a particular interest. >> it has been interesting to watch the transcription project because there are a number of senior centers and nursing homes. there is nursing home in massachusetts that has adopted us and is doing transcriptions. i think it's wonderful. >> and in terms of retired professors and people want to keep engaged. because you can do it remotely, with limited mobility with a lot of seniors, this is a way they can keep involved. >> we talk about cooking two. >> macaroni and cheese probably. >> the library of congress has
one of the largest collections of historical cookbooks. imagine what programming you could do that. not, say anything, because he will steal it. it will call it a patent to the mix or something like that. >> before your time, we had a blockbuster exhibit about what's cooking uncle sam. it told the story of testing preservatives sent the changes of the food groups over time. tino butter used to be a food group? >> reporter: i still think it is. [laughter] on for that. >> have to talk about your shop, you just renovated and have a new education center, and your
shop is to die for. >> i heard you are trying to steal my shop manager. [laughter] i was scouting. >> we are renovating our self and i had to do a field trip. i did talk to the nice lady. she seems moderately happy. [laughter] she's ready for a new challenge. >> we stolen from the zoo. [laughter] >> i'm not saying a word with that line. >> in her first year she introduced socks into the repertoire. $100,000 with the sox in the first year. >> your shop, the cool thing about the archives in the shop is that when you are in a section, they have sections that are wonderful about subjects and
errors in world war ii, there are the terminals right there that connect to to the collections and what else you can do. right when you are making the decision about purchasing, you are being tied to the archives. that is what really makes it not just a retail experience, also great but the tie and to the contents of the archives as we well. >> if you and never been to the national archives there's two entrances. the constitution side if you want to come in and see the charters and exhibits in the museum side of the house. the other side is for research, you come in that door. since i have got there i've tried to figure out ways to break a hole through that wall
so there is more interaction on both sides. you get a taste on the museum side about what's possible. genealogy is our biggest market. more genealogists than anything else. genealogists, the veterans everything else after that. , but some way to use the experience, the immediate experience from the museum on the research side to get people more interested and excited about not just genealogy, but our records and learning more about our history, most important, learning about civics and how the government works and what the three branches of government are and what their responsibilities are as american citizens. that's what i'm trying to figure
out. >> we all are. [applause] >> i know we have time now for questions from the audience. i'm not sure where the microphones are. there's a spotlight. great. we would like to hear from you. >> thank you both for safeguarding the evidence of our history and especially doing it was such style, grace, good humor. i like to thank you doctor hayden for being an awesome mentor and teaching me everything i know about building inclusive and caring library communities. i enjoyed an incredible career because of your mentorship. i would just like to take this as an opportunity to thank you from the bottom of my heart for
everything you do. [applause] >> thank you. [applause] >> hello. a week or two ago i read in the newspaper about trump ripping up his papers? i wonder if either one or both of you would want to weigh in on lines? [laughter] >> one of the fascinating jobs of the national archives is to deal with transitions of
administrations and there are about 4000 presidential appointees leaving and arriving at the same time. one of our jobs is to ensure those folks for leaving are leaving behind their records and the other is to ensure the folks coming in i've been being trained about what the rules are. that includes the executive branch stuff in the presidential records stuff for those folks in the white house. if the same at the startup of any administration. the federal records act gives me more authority than the presidential records act does in terms of what i can do. i can do investigation sent to have more teeth on the federal side with the agencies then on the presidential records side. i provide guidance.
i can tell you are communications with the white house are privileged, we're not allowed to talk about them. in their communications with us are also privileged. i can tell you every time i pick up the paper and read one of these things, whether it's this administration or the past, i learned about the secretary of state's personal server reading it in the new york times, that's how i found out about it. so, it's not just this administration comments administrations in general. when something like that happens we watch questions and try to verify what is going on. then, we ask -- we asked for permission to tell us whatever the responses. if you go to the archives.gov
website and check the foia page, you'll see, for each administration responses to questions we have race but just the kind of activity you are talking about. so, i cannot say more about this particular incident. but, i learned about it when you did. >> i would like to ask about the safeguarding of the technology types of technology were using. i am not a librarian, trustee at various levels. in one of my advocacy roles i said on a board which may be unofficially maybe the only library older than the library of congress. among the 50 state libraries
there is enormous wealth of information. if we find that the federal government, the archives and the federal agencies are having a hard time with both funding and a uniform method of technology, we can understand those 50 states are on their own to create their own system of technology. so it poses the problem, how do we find a way to take what you're working on at the national level and encourage your require or for some things to get the state's top rate on the same technological system so eventually it can work its way down. i have easy access to the archives in the library of congress, the vast majority of the country can never really physically get there. they're going to go to their states. how do you create a system that everybody can work with together
so that we can figure out when the technology does change that we can migrate to a new system so were not stuck with three and half inch floppy disks and zip drives that will never be in use in the future. how do we work on that together to get the states on board with the way you are working to protect her information digitally? >> for me, i'm working with the council of state archivist. we meet on a regular basis and share best practices. also, the development work we are doing is open source tools. as we're meeting with the industry to educate about records management, those are the same issues the state archivist are dealing with. we have made a commitment to the state archivist that we will share the open source tools will
be available to anyone who wants to use them. >> terrific, thank you. >> and similar with the library of congress and some of the other state organizations as well. i'm looking at tony, there are a number of networking opportunities that will allow us to share platforms. we are very involved in that. >> hello. president trump uses twitter quite a bit. i was wondering how you're documenting his tweets for the future? >> you collect tweets? >> president obama, for eight years tweeted so we did get experience with the previous administration. so we are capturing both streams, the real donald trump, and potus, and the deleted
tweets. [applause] >> in terms of the technological capacity that you have to have an to go forward, what are you doing there? historic and the new in terms of some of the challenges. >> in response to the virginia question, we are working closely with other federal partners on cloud storage. so, it is clearly the future for us, and the president. >> hello. there is a video showing before the session that indicated the library of congress requires 12000 items per day which i find to be an incredible number. where are all of those things,
roughly? >> well, every working day, the library of congress selects approximately 12000 items, it could be periodicals, photographs, film, monographs, all types of items. a vast majority of the items are available because of the copyright deposit system. and where you might have about 20000 items coming through the copyright deposit system, the library has in their collection management department select materials from the as well as purchase it's quite an
enterprise. >> you mentioned the genealogists are the largest audience at the national archives, with all the materials you have how do you prioritize what you work on digitizing? >> we have crowd source. we vast the community what is the most important. we have a hit list of the records that the public has told us is most important. we are heavily dependent on private funding to accomplish that. there is not government funding for that work. so, very often it is matching up the right partner with a list of things that have been identified for digitization. we have been fortunate to have benefited from the support of an
anonymous donor was very interested in world war wanted to fill photographs. that has always been high on our list of things to do. that was a good match. but it is an ongoing process. finding the right donor and matching it. >> that list is somewhere on our website. if you go to our website, if you search, you'll find it, tried digitization priorities. there's a public list. >> the library of commerce has a list of collections to be digitized. >> i guess my question is around true in history, a question i have is, how are you capturing context and how are you ensuring our archives represent
everyone's history, instead of the history of just people who are in power right now? >> could i jump in with that on context. >> i don't to context. >> we do context in a different way. mentioned jon meacham, a great historian, doris kearns goodwin, her book about team of rivals, what the scholars and historians to this take the actual things and they provide the context and historical perspective and using all types of sources. so, by making sure the sources are there were collected, that's where a lot of the curators and librarians are saying this collection could be important to
anyone that was going to be looking at fill in the blank, the subjects are this history, or this culture. and that's what collection management are tasked with doing. they provide the raw material for the scholars to come in. then, we we the stories together. >> we are responsible for anything the government creates. unlike some other national archives, we do not select only the good stories. we collect everything. everything that is created in schedule for delivery to us. this issue of truth is incredibly important. all of the work we do to follow up on what we see are potential
violations of record loss goes to that point to ensure that to the best of our ability we are making sure people are creating, maintaining, and transferring to us the records as they are created, not adjusted, not to leave, not changed. that is our responsibility. >> if you go to mount vernon, george washington's home, there is an exhibit there. it has martha washington. it shows you marci martha washin that after george washington died she put all of the letters and burn them. she did not want anyone, there is no letter that survived
between george and martha washington. she did not want that personal part to be exposed. that's an interesting thing when you look at contacts or historical figures in history. there is that aspect as well. >> let me give you two examples of collections that i am personally proud of the fact that we have saved them in these things have survived over time and we have them in our custody so we can learn from them. 377 treaties signed with the indian nations. that easily could've been a collection that could have been destroyed because of embarrassment or whatever. but, these treaties are used today by tribal elders and lawyers to settle water rates
claims, land claims, but they tell a horrible story of how our government treated native american. things that were promised to them and never delivered. there's that body of record. the other is all the records from the japanese internment camps. horrible story of how we treated german-americans, japanese americans, in a way that is just inhuman. another set of records that have been preserved to maintain and should service is a lesson from our own history. >> i have a question about the citizen archivist and the citizen historian programs.
if there is a big need for volunteers in those programs, i'm wondering if the state library associations might be able to provide or mobilize retired librarians. i know the texas association has a roundtable of retired librarians. >> that's a great idea. >> quite often people are participating in these programs and there is in a great need. >> there is any. >> there is a great need. >> we will follow up. [applause] >> i am a history librarian at mississippi state. thank you for the shout out. my question is, one of our biggest problems is helping students and researchers access primary sources who do not have resources to drive to institutions all of the world and country.
i was wondering if you had ideas, apart from digitization which requires tons of resources. you have any ideas or anything about how we can help students and researchers access these resources? >> digitizing is very helpful in terms of the actual collections. also, the library of congress has a program teaching library and you have curriculums connecting you to what's digitized and you can connect to other sources as well. the smithsonian has put up a lot of educational. >> and archives. [laughter] so, being able to help educators with this and it's not just
enough to put it up there but to actually have the curriculum guides in k-12 and beyond is one way that were working on that. then, the 18 wheelers, going into communities. >> okay. >> we talked about that, the skin a bagel project. >> to actually go in and have staff and people there that can also work with school groups another people. >> we have something called doc teach and it has thousands of scans as primary sources, but more excitingly, lesson plans that teachers who are using the documents have created. a community of teachers that work around the site share information about best practices in the classroom.
>> spec, librarian and i work at a nine through 12 gray boarding school in connecticut. i spend a lot of time educating our students and teachers about their use in copyright, bibliographies and making sure they do the stuff they're supposed to do. i was concerned when i heard about the possibility of the copyright office moving away and i don't know thursday news about if that is going to happen or if everything is safe because we do utilize resources for a lot of things we do well, right now the copyright office is still being administered by the library of commerce. any movement on changing the is
on hold basically. waiting on congress. so, in the meantime were working on modernizing come icu put a thumbs up, there's a lot of work to be done there. really, no matter what happens, the copyright process needs to be modernized, easier for people to register and to record and all of these things. when i say record, i mean record their rights and transferring, especially in the digital age. we are busy trying to do that. we've had congress support financially and fiscally to work on that. so, where it lives is secondary to what it does how it does it. that is what we are working on now. >> another thumbs-up. >> my name is alfred, i'm from
an elementary school. i want to thank you for sharing and giving us enlightenment on the division and actual responsibilities of both entities. secondly about making the library of congress and open opportunity for information. something he shared a long time ago, and i see it manifesting in your work there. i would also like to share for those may be in virginia there is a resource that you can tap into the library of congress, the archives and the smithsonian all on one platform. and many other entities to give you full access. i know virginia has said i don't know their rights for other people. my question is as an elementary
librarian, how do i get my kids into the macaroni and cheese overnight stay? >> were working on it. >> we need to give them opportunities for exposure. >> if you go to the archives.gov website you will find an announcement of the next one coming up which is october 14. we do twice a year, it's open to 100 kids 8 - 12 years old. they have to have an adult with them. >> reporter: thank you. >> the pressure is on. >> i think i might have to do hotdogs to. will have to be organic. thomas jefferson was a foodie and had a garden. so were working on ours. we'll get that going. please let us know and keep in
touch. >> thank you. >> i would like to know, has president trump mentioned where he may want to have his presidential library museum someday? >> that's a great question. we get regular phone calls from around the country from press asking that same question. usually press in florida. and as for as i know, no decision has been made. indication perhaps when barbara bush passed, he announced that he planned to be buried in new jersey at the golf course. so, if he plans to be buried at the site of his library, that's may be an early indication. we don't know.
>> i was can ask about the abraham lincoln 12. >> i'm from michigan. >> what you do there? >> i'm on the library board and the executive director for president for its foundation. i wanted to take the opportunity to publicly thank you for the unique relationship the foundation have with archives and to continue the legacies of our president. i know you have been working hard to try to bring the foundations and archives to a different level. do you want to talk about the unique relationship and your efforts to talk about the legacy of the presidents? >> this is an interesting dynamic. you have the federal government, a private foundation and a family working together to preserve the legacy of an administration.
the family and these 14 sites that are part of the archives. there is an advisory group that was dormant when i arrived. it was important to me as i was kneading my staff and the folks in the foundation that we develop a better working relationship so we can share best practices and leverage the great work being done around the country in each of these institutions. and, to get them to work together natalie my own directors but to work more productively as a group. we try to meet twice a year, once in washington and one set one of the sites to talk about the reform plans, the
consolidation of classified information washington rather than the presidential library. some staff reductions in the presidential libraries. it is important to me as a communication tool. these are the most complex of our relationships. it is a stewardship responsibility getting a disparate group of folks, even within some of the families, getting them to work together with the federal government and a private foundation. so, another thing i spent a lot of time on. >> i can say, thank you for the compliment, it has been very productive. >> so when there is a president like lincoln, how do you deal
with the ongoing. >> i don't. >> i have enough to worry about. >> so your association, the abraham lincoln association. >> lincoln is a good example. he's everywhere. the lincoln library. >> i had a question about staff development, as you shift your priorities towards digitization, how will your priorities and staff development. you both have huge staff. curious to hear your thoughts and what you look for in staff in the future. >> actually, the library of commerce has to have staff development and training on the
technology but also archival methods and conservation and preservation. that is not going to stop. it's the balance that's going on at the same time. so, that's a big part of it having the technology and retrofitting some staff members skills that started out and helping them with the technology skills. is going to be both. >> comedy staff? >> 3200, approximately. three buildings, fort meade, packard center. >> okay, here we go. >> we won't go there. >> a lot. >> yes. i heard. is clear the set of competencies we are looking for is shifting. it's a double approach in terms of working with their own staff
to help them develop the skills they need to be successful and also recruiting folks who are coming in with the skills. that is a process that has been going on for ten years. long before i got there. certainly the situation and before that in my time and took it was the same kind of recognizing this is the future. . . new folks who are bringing in that kind of scale.
>> yes, just on a quick personal note i went to school and worked in d.c. and 80s and some of my most inspired moments doing research at the national archives. memories that will never go away. my question is i know that the national archives of the program by using wikipedia to get truthful history out to the public. i'll find out if i'll see will start doing the same. >> so i've been a huge fan of wikipedia since my time in duke when i discovered an entry someone had done an entry on me. >> was a correct? >> it was over the top and embarrassingly over-the-top.
i was embarrassed that people would think i wrote this thing. i watched the process with people commenting and got fascinated with this whole thing. so when i went to the new york public library, we started to recognize the value of wikipedia. when i went to new york, i got even more interested in encouraged art curators, folks were processing collections to go in and out links in wikipedia to the new york public library collections as a way of drawing people back into the library. i can still remember my favorite example at library for the performing arts where processor had finished processing the petty collection went into wikipedia and made the link. within half an hour she had a flaming e-mail from a faculty
member at northwestern i believe who had created the site, the wikipedia site and how dare you go when and suggest changes to my work and on and on. i was very proud of her because she flamed right back and telling him that she had the collection in front of her. this is the truth. so the value of linking was something i really believed in, firmly believed in. when i came to washington coming here with another opportunity to think about how can we -- one of my greatest concerns from the very beginning, still a great concern is we are the best-kept secret in the world did people don't know about the national archives, don't know about the richness of the records in the collections. so how can we expose more and more people to what we are doing in wikipedia was one of the
things that i wanted people to start linking all of our records to items in wikipedia. so we hired the first federal wikipedia and residents. the study was a graduate of matt simmons to be -- he dropped out of school. he dropped out of school today full-time in these worked with the staff to educate them, change the culture around attitude towards wikipedia and we now have, for me it's all about eyeballs. we get about 7 million hits to our catalog a year, and 2017 data. almost 5000 articles in wikipedia that rely heavily on national archives content.
1.7 billion hits last year. [applause] this is why i'm such a huge fan of wikipedia. we do at it on and i speak of wikipedia conferences. if you're going to wikipedia and searched seersucker and look at the me. >> and that's a growth area for me personally. congress is also involved in doing quite a lot because it does help to add what you know is correct authoritative content to wikipedia and making sure they are part of it, too. we have time for one more question before we have to break out your >> hello. i would like to applaud the
american library association and the national archives for recognizing diversity, especially in the form of gender diversity, women. i would like to acknowledge the fact that dr. hayden is the first african-american, national librarian and we also have another leader in atlanta, dr. meredith evans. so i really would like to applaud the association for recognizing that readership does come in different forms. [applause] >> thank you so much. and i really want thank you all for being here because we enjoy being together, working together. we have her other colleague here and do that sport an absentee is. you should know that we are working together and trying to make sure --