Lancaster County Library News
From the Carolina Gateway
Lancaster County Library Director Richard Band participated in Connecting to Collections: The National Conservation Summit last week in Washington, D.C. Only four representatives –
two from museums and two from libraries – from each state and the District of Columbia were selected to attend this national conference sponsored by the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services.
The event underscored the risks that endanger America’s books, works of art, documents, and other treasures and promoted solutions for saving them. Those selected to attend the summit have a strong commitment to conservation and are among the best people in the country to spearhead a national conservation initiative, said IMLS Director Anne-Imelda Radice. “After the summit, we hope that the conversation about saving invaluable collections will continue in communities across the U.S.”
Participants at the meeting represented small and medium-sized museums, libraries and historic organizations with a proven dedication and commitment to conservation. They were joined at the meeting by national leaders in conservation, government officials and leaders in private sector support for conservation.
The Lancaster County Library houses an extensive collection of manuscript material related
to local history and genealogy. For the past two years, the library has used an IMLS grant to inventory and organize these holdings to preserve them and make them available to students
and researchers. Project Director Joanne Ellis has created a Web site – http://history.lanclib.org – where users can survey the scope of the collections, including photographs. The grant is administered by the S.C. State Library under the federal Library Services and Technology Act. Heritage Preservation, the national organization devoted to
preserving America’s heritage, is cooperating with IMLS to organize the summit. Heritage Preservation’s 2005 report, A Public Trust at Risk: the Heritage Health Index Report on the State of America’s Collections, revealed that there are 4.8 billion artifacts held in this country’s archives, libraries, museums and historical societies – many of these in small- to medium-sized towns and cities.
The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for
the nation’s 122,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The institute’s mission is to create strong
libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas. To learn more about the
institute, go to www.imls.gov.