Special Access, Special Collections and Archives

DePaul University Special Collections and Archives is happy to participate again this year in the Chicago Area Archivists Chicago Open Archives events.  Over thirty archives, research centers, and cultural institutions in the Chicago area are participating, inviting the community to explore local resources through tours, talks, and exhibits. The three-day event runs October 6-8, 2016 and DePaul Special Collections and Archives will offer tours, movies, digital preservation advice, and a Wikipedia Edit-a-thon on October 8.

While early registration is required for some events, please feel free to attend any of the DePaul events, even if you have not registered.  We’ll be here, ready to share our collections, expertise, and enthusiasm!


Saturday October 8

10:00 am and 11:00 am tours – Behind the Scenes of Special Collections and Archives: Take a behind-the-scenes tour of the department, including spaces usually off-limits to researchers. Visitors will learn more about collection strengths, how collections grow over time, what processing decisions provide researcher access to the materials, and which preservation activities are needed to support a largely 19th and 20th century collection.  (John T. Richardson Library, Room 314)


11:00 am to 1:00 pm (drop-in) – Lincoln Park Stories: DePaul University has been a fixture in Lincoln Park since the opening of St. Vincent’s College in 1898, witnessing and sometimes influencing social, demographic, and architectural change. Drop in to view a video of oral histories discussing the Lincoln Park neighborhood from the 1960s to early 2000s, produced by the Lincoln Park Community Research Initiative. Learn about the archival collections created and donated by organizations and individuals in Lincoln Park and hear from students who have worked in these collections. (John T. Richardson Library, Room 300)

1:00 pm to 2:00 pm class – Personal Digital Archiving: Have you ever taken stock of your digital life? What would happen to your photos and social media if you weren’t there to log in, or if specific platforms became unavailable? What are the best strategies for saving your most important digital files long term? This workshop will introduce you to basic steps you can take to promote longevity and access to the digital content you create every day. (John T. Richardson Library, Room 115)


2:00 pm to 5:00 am (drop-in by 4) – #BigShoulders Edit-a-thon:  Become a Wikipedian! Join Chicago Collections to create and/or improve articles on Chicago topics that relate to our members’ archives and collections. We have already identified a wide range of entries that need edits, with topics including Chicago history, famous institutions, arts, politics, and neighborhoods.  There’s something for every interest! We will be editing on Saturday October 8 at DePaul University, John T. Richardson Library. For more details on this event, please see the Chicago Collections website.  Chicago Collections is a consortium of libraries, museums, and other institutions with archives that collaborate to preserve and share the history and culture of the Chicago region.  (John T. Richardson Library, Scholar’s Lab, 1st floor)

If you can’t make it this weekend, there are other archives-oriented events throughout the city, state and country in October, which is designated American Archives Month by the Society of American Archivists, and Illinois Archives Month by the Illinois State Archives.

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