Wrapping up Day of DH 2016

Writing a quick wrap-up post for my Day of DH 2016, because I’m still at work and will likely stay here or another hour or so – I haven’t finished everything on my to-do list from earlier!

I still need to work on completing questionnaires for the upcoming preservation consultant visit – it’s taken me so much longer to collect data on the history of the library building maintenance, who has keys to what doors, and fill in gaps of knowledge in our inventory numbers (I counted all of our archives microfilm yesterday because it had never really been inventoried before) than I thought it would! I’m nearly done with the report/questionnaire on our physical holdings, but I have a few more hours left to finish the report on our digital holdings.

Pictures taken during the HIS/GER 433 book-mkaing practice session this afternoon.
Pictures taken during the HIS/GER 433 book-making practice session this afternoon.

The HIS/GER 433 group project meeting on our chapbook/scrapbook went very well – Gabriel Ford from the English department joined us and brought along his book-making supplies, so we ended up constructing a tiny practice book together (we all folded paper, Colin cut a thicker paper for the cover, Hannah Grace made holes for binding the spine with an awl, Amanda sewed the binding with wax-covered thread, and then Colin cut the extra thread and test drove actually opening the book). We also came to some decisions about paper size, type, and workflow for constructing the final product – due to be completed by May 2nd!

My meeting at the Pines retirement community also went very well – it was great to pick Bob Cooke’s brain about his project to “take on and emulate a university press,” including hearing about his friendship and work with Ken King (as encapsulated by this lecture, “The Origin and History of the Internet,” given by Ken King and uploaded to Cornell’s IR by Bob Cooke. You can see more about the Internet-First University Press here.

Paperwork, inventories, book-making, and meetings – I’ve had a pretty non-digital heavy Day of DH, although all of these activities are part of a larger picture that definitely is DH!

Plans for the day

This year’s Day of DH happens to fall on a very busy day day for me – the end of the semester is fast approaching at Davidson, so everything tends to be chaotic this time of year, but especially so today!

Coffee for this morning courtesy of the student I'm the host parent for (Coraline) - she brought me back a bunch of single pour-over coffee packets from her last trip home to Beijing!
Coffee for this morning courtesy of the student I’m the host parent for (Coraline) – she brought me back a bunch of single pour-over coffee packets from her last trip home to Beijing!

So, here’s what’s on my docket for the day:

  • Completing preparations for a consultant site visit – my department received a few grants at the end of 2015, one of which was a National Endowment for the Humanities Preservation Assistance Grant, which allowed us to hire a consultant from the Northeast Document Conservation Center to conduct a site visit and write up reports giving us recommendations to guide the drafting of our first digital and physical preservation plans for the Archives & Special Collections. That site visit is next week, and since I’m the PI on that grant, I have a few things to tie-up – completing our pre-visit questionnaires and emailing those our consultant (ASAP!), and finalizing a few scheduling details.
  • Chapbook/scrapbook meeting – I’m a co-instructor/embedded archivist for HIS/GER 433: The Holocaust and Representation course this semester. One of the final project groups is working on creating a sort of hybrid chapbook/scrapbook that encapsulates the class experience, synthesizes the other writing projects that other class groups are working on, and provides a sort of syllabus-like guide to how to teach this type of course in the future. I’m working with the chapbook/scrapbook group, and we have a meeting this afternoon in the archives to look at some artist’s books for inspiration and make decisions on paper types and construction.
  • Supervising graduate student volunteer project – we have a graduate student from the UNC Greensboro MLIS program, who is volunteering for us as part of one of her classes. She’s digitizing one of our collection scrapbooks and creating an exhibit in Omeka, and has been coming in for about 6 hours a week. I’m her primary supervisor on the project, and as it nears completion I’ll need to check-in with her this afternoon during her shift to see where her progress is and talk about how best to demonstrate the work she’s done for her professor.
  • Pines meeting – my colleague Jan and I have a meeting this afternoon at the retirement community in town, the Pines. A recent addition to the Pines, Bob Cooke, contacted us to ask if we wanted to hear about his work on open access scholarly publishing and conducting oral histories while he was a faculty member at Cornell. We’re launching a few new oral history initiatives this fall, and have been wanting to deep-dive into critical thinking of our IR, so we leapt at the chance to chat with Bob.
  • dh+lib – I’m the Editor for the upcoming Review, publishing next Thursday. Most of the heavy lifting when you’re the Editor for the week will come on the Wednesday before publication, but I try to check in early to see what our Editors-at-large have nominated thus far.

So, very busy day! I’m going to try to keep updating this blog and my twitter as the day goes on, but we’ll see how frequently I can manage…

About Me

Hello! My name is Caitlin Christian-Lamb, and I’m an archivist/librarian/digital scholarship-y person.

I live in small-town North Carolina and work as the Associate Archivist of Davidson College, a private liberal arts college of just under 2,000 undergraduate students. I also serve as a Review Editor for dh+lib, and as a member of the Society of American Archivists’ Standards Committee.

I’m interested in a lot of things, but mainly: public history, collective memory, intersections between pop culture and history, digital pedagogy, creative archives/library outreach methods, undergraduate education, the role of information professionals in academic discourse, digital preservation, and trying to learn everything about everything.

Other places to find me: my website, Twitter, work blog (Around The D).

This is my third Day of DH (see my 2014 site here and 2015 site here) and I’m excited to share it with y’all!