Series offers advice on preserving family history in digital archive

The Shelburne Historical Society is offering a series of workshops to help individuals and historical societies navigate the digital archiving world and preserve the past for future generations. Through discussion, sharing of practical knowledge and hands-on work, participants will learn the latest methods to maintain your valuable memories in a digital world.

The workshops cover digital archiving of photographs, documents and letters, audio (stories and music), and video/film. We will discuss standards and guidelines, the digitization process, and digital storage and maintenance options.

The workshops are part of a grant from the Champlain Valley National Heritage Partnership. Shelburne resident Paul Irish will facilitate the discussion. Irish started working with digital images in the 1990s, posting photographs of events on the first Champlain Valley Union High School website. Since then, he has archived over 1,000 historical photographs of families, audio recordings, home movies, and collectible dolls. As a recent “graduate” of the Preservation 101 online course offered by the New England Document Conservation Center, Irish is “armed” with the latest digitizing methods and standards for document preservation.

Classes will be held in the lower level of the newly renovated Town Hall.

Sessions dates and topics:

Oct. 19: Session 1 – 10 a.m.; Introduction to Digital Archiving

Session 2 – 11:30 a.m.; Focus on Photographs Part 1

Oct. 26: Session 3 – 10 a.m.; Focus on Photographs Part 2

Session 4 – 11:30 a.m.; Texts, Documents and Letters Part 1

Nov. 2: Session 5 – 10 a.m.; Texts, Documents and Letters Part 2

Session 6 – 11:30 a.m.; Digital Storytelling and Audio Preservation Part 1

Nov.9: Session 7 – 10 a.m.; Digital Storytelling and Audio Preservation Part 2

Session 8 – 11:30 a.m.; Archiving Video and Movies Part 1

Nov. 16: Session 9 – 10 a.m.; Archiving Video and Movies Part 2

Session 10 – 11:30 a.m.; Moving Forward – Technical and Storage

The workshops which will be offered in the newly renovated historic Shelburne Town Hall, are free and refreshments will be provided. Participants do not need to attend all 10 sessions; the sessions are self-contained in their content. The optimum number of participants is 20, so please RSVP to attend any of the sessions.

Additional information will reference the NEDCC free online textbook, Preservation 101, available

For additional information about the workshops, email

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