Sometimes a collection’s provenance, the history of ownership and/or physical custody, is very straight-forward: creator -> repository or creator -> donor -> repository. Occasionally, it’s more of a mess. Things leave the creator’s custody without permission, end up somewhere else, things get lost… That’s what happened to the New York State Athletic Commission’s meeting minutes. Some background info: I fell down the research rabbit hole on a … Continue reading On the Provenance of the Commission’s Meeting Minutes: From the Garage to the Hall to the Archives
The New York State Athletic Commission’s history of records management contains as many twists and turns as anything seen in a wrestling ring. Commission meeting minutes, from 1920 to 1977, went missing from the agency’s office in the late 1970s and eventually appeared in the International Boxing Hall of Fame’s collection about a decade later. Neither the Commission nor the State of New York knew about it until 1998.
It’s different being a researcher in an archive as opposed to being an archivist in your own archive. I guess it can be likened to being a guest in someone’s home in a different country and culture: You’re not sure where things are, what exactly you’re supposed to do, or what’s going to happen. You just hope to not fumble around like an idiot or break things. … Continue reading On the Other Side of the Window: Being an Archives Researcher
For a bit of background: On That One Phrase… On the Hank Kaplan, Part I… On the Hank Kaplan, Part II… All I wanted was to look at some old boxing stuff. That’s it. I picked a topic that was relevant to my interests and wanted to see how they intersected: Boxing and wrestling promotion in the early- to mid-twentieth century and if, how, they were … Continue reading On Where I’m At Right Now: A Research Timeline
I recently jumped down the research rabbit hole and ended up in Albany, New York, at the New York State Archives. I’ll get into the specifics of that adventure a bit later, but first — ARCHIVES FIELD TRIP!!! Established in 1971 and officially open for business in 1978, the New York State Archives is the repository for the state government’s archival records and historic documents … Continue reading On the New York State Archives, or FIELD TRIP!!