MayDay!

May 1, 2008

Straight Out Of The House by SNWEB.ORG Photography

Straight Out Of The House, photo by SNWEB.ORG Photography

This photo is part of SNWEB’s Detroit Fire Department set (slideshow). He says that you can buy a print of this photo with one click but that if you are a DFD member and would like a print, please contact him directly!

I’m featuring this photo because I was tipped off (from a fan of the Michigan archives) that the Society of American Archivists recognize May 1st as MayDay. They say:

Protecting our collections is one of our fundamental responsibilities as archivists. The Heritage Health Index, released in 2005 soon after hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Wilma struck the Gulf Coast, reported that few institutions have disaster plans and for those that do, often the plan is out of date. It’s easy to put off emergency response planning as we devote our attentions to tasks with more immediate “payback”

But on May 1 – this year and every year – you can do something that will make a difference when and if an emergency occurs. That’s the purpose of MayDay – a grassroots effort whose goal is to save our archives.

MayDay is a time when archivists and other cultural heritage professionals take personal and professional responsibility for doing something simple – something that can be accomplished in a day but that can have a significant impact on an individual’s or a repository’s ability to respond.

Reading through their recommended activities made me think that all of us could take a few minutes today to think about a preservation plan for our photos and other historical records.

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