Virginia Archives Month October 2018

Even in the most staid of archival repositories, there are collection materials that are just, well, odd. This October’s celebration of American Archives Month in Virginia is themed “Archival Oddities” and seeks to highlight those curious, quirky, peculiar, and downright odd items housed in archives and special collections across the commonwealth.

Every year during October, the archival community in the commonwealth celebrates American Archives Month to raise public awareness about the importance of preserving and sharing cultural and historical documents from families, communities, states, and the country at large. Archivists reach out to their communities during this month to make connections and educate the public about the value of archives and their work in caring for and making them accessible. Archives are unique assets that allow society to tell its story, hold governments accountable, and safeguard the rights of its citizens.

That said, archives do not always have to be places of serious research—they can be about serious (or not so serious) creativity, too! To that end, the Virginia caucus of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference (MARAC) is once again holding a contest called REMIX | Archival Oddities from October 1st through October 31st. The public is invited to create redaction poetry, GIFs, collages, coloring pages, memes, and other digital interventions using archival images found in the 2018 Virginia Archives Month Flickr album.

Please enjoy and share the Archives Month poster, created from images submitted by archives and manuscript repositories from across the state, the poster highlights Virginians' rich historical and cultural traditions.

We also welcome you to explore your Virginia cultural heritage by delving into an archives collection near you during the month of October. Numerous programs, lectures, and tours are slated to take place at institutions around the Commonwealth, so keep track of events on their web pages or on the Archives Month Facebook page. In the Richmond region, also check out the Artober calendar for lots of cultural events and programs. Visit your local repository to find inspiration for a creative endeavor or just to enjoy some odd archives!

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