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Town-Wide History Project

   Thursday, November 20th, 2008 - by: Brian Herzog, Head of Reference

Town of Chelmsford sealThe Chelmsford Library and many other groups in town are beginning a Town-Wide History Project. The goal of the project is to create a master index of local historical records, preserve these original and irreplaceable records, and digitize as much of it as possible.

The first step of the project was to ask local organizations and Town departments with historical records or artifacts to complete a Preliminary Survey (download the survey [pdf]). This was to give us an idea of how much and what kind of historical records each group has, and where this information is stored. The next step will be visiting each location to conduct a direct inventory of the records.

The project will also include inviting experts in the field to speak at the library about preserving historic information, both for Town and personal use. We expect this project to take years to complete in full, especially the digitization of records. But once information is preserved and digitized, it will be much easier for historians, genealogists, and anyone curious about the history of Chelmsford, its buildings, parks and citizens, to access through the internet.

We've created a Chelmsford History Project webpage to keep track of the project progress, and we invite the public to participate as much as possible. Although the project is currently focusing on local churches, organizations and Town departments, we recognize that many private collections in peoples' homes are of great value as well.

If you'd like to be involved, know of a historical collection, or just have questions about the project, please contact Brian Herzog, Head of Reference, at bherzog@mvlc.org or 978-256-221 x111.

   Posted in Library Information, Reference | No Comments »




Research Database Updates

   Thursday, January 10th, 2008 - by: Brian Herzog, Head of Reference

There were two recent changes to the research databases provided by the Chelmsford Library:

New Historical Newspaper Database
Access NewspaperARCHIVE logoThe library has just signed up with the Access NewspaperARCHIVE database, which provides access to over 2000 newspapers from all over the world. Some of the newspapers date back to the 1700s, which means this is a great resource for students and others looking for primary sources.

This database is accessible from within the library only, and patrons can browse by location, date, or newspaper title. What you'll find are the front pages of most major and many minor newspapers, just like they appeared when they were originally published.

All of the newspapers are saved as PDF files, and require Adobe Acrobat Reader to view them. And like other PDFs, they can be easily printed, saved or emailed.

New Interface for NewsBank Newspapers
NewsBank logoThe NewsBank databases (Chelmsford Independent, Lowell Sun, New York Times) have a brand new interface designed to significantly enhance the searching experience. A few of the improvements allow patrons to more easily:

  • refine searches for more relevant returns
  • limit searches by article word count to filter out news briefs and minor articles
  • refine results and pinpoint articles by title, date, source type and geographic location
  • display topic and events results over time
  • print, email or cite articles with an improved toolbox

For help using either of these databases, or for questions on any of the resources offered by the Chelmsford Library, please contact the Reference Desk.

chelmsford, database, databases, historical, library, newsbank, newspaper, newspaperarchive, newspapers, papers, public

   Posted in Library Information, Resources | No Comments »




Update on MacKay Branch Renovation

   Thursday, November 29th, 2007 - by: Brian Herzog, Head of Reference

Photo of MacKay's new carpetingThe renovation project to the MacKay Branch is proceeding right on schedule.

This week, workers finished painting the walls, staining the woodwork and installing new carpeting, and library staff has begun bringing furniture back in. The new book shelves are scheduled to be delivered and installed next week, and once those are in, staff will begin putting all the materials back on the shelves. Also over the next two weeks, staff will be reestablishing the computer networks and terminals, the photocopier, office furniture, and library signage and artwork.

We've been taking pictures of the progress, and those are available online at the Library's flickr.com account. Also available for viewing are historical pictures of the MacKay building, which were found while staff moved materials out before the renovation began.

branch, chelmsford, contruction, historical, library, ma, mackay, mass, massachusetts, north, photographs, renovation

   Posted in Current News, Library Information | No Comments »