UPDATE: PACSCL has been awarded a second processing grant by the Council on Library and Information Resources, and will process an additional 46 collections totaling 1,571 linear feet from 16 area repositories, beginning in fall 2013. Work on this new project will also be chronicled here.
From July 2009 to March 2012, the PACSCL/CLIR Hidden Collections in the Philadelphia Area: A Consortial Processing and Cataloging Initiative Project Team worked on an ambitious and innovative project to process and make accessible 200 archival collections with documented research value. Now, post-project, it possible for researchers to discover little-known and long-forgotten aspects of Philadelphia and American history through the diverse voices of the people whose thoughts, theories and actions shaped our world as it is today. What we uncovered may provide new perspectives on traditional interpretations of politics, culture, science, medicine, religion and social activism.
At the end of this project, our experiments with archival processing, delivery of electronic finding aids, and cross-repository collaborative work have resulted in a treasure trove of new and exciting resources for researchers of all types. At the same time, other archival repositories, consortia, educators and students have access to the project documentation and, hopefully, will benefit from our successes as well as learn from our difficulties.