Meet Sadie Roosa, our new American Archive team member

sadie_roosaHi! I’m Sadie Roosa, and I’m very excited to join the American Archive team here at WGBH. I’ve already met many of you before, through emails and phone calls, when I was helping to wrap up the Content Inventory Project. In the meantime, I worked on several other WGBH projects, and got to manage the final stages of the Boston TV News Digital Library website (which you should all totally go check out. It’s awesome!). Now, I’m eager as ever to start back in on this grand endeavor.

I will be working on many different parts of the project, supporting Project Manager Casey Davis,  but I will be mainly focused on metadata and cataloging. I’m thrilled with this assignment because it means I get to watch and listen to all of the great content that’s being digitized. Just taking a few cursory strolls through the AMS, I’ve already come across so many interesting things that I can’t even pick a favorite.

As I will likely be working with many of the station contacts, I thought it’d be a good idea to tell you a bit more about myself. I graduated with my MLIS from the University of Pittsburgh in 2011, and before that got my BA in Literary Studies at Simon’s Rock, a very small college in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. Most of my free time is spent cooking, reading, watching TV (I am an AV archivist, whatcha gonna do?), and walking around Boston. I also love to bake, and apparently I’m pretty good at it. One time when I brought scones in for the office, I had a coworker run up to me and yell, “Did you makes these?! What are you even doing working here?! You should be selling these in a bakery.” I chose to take that as a compliment.

If you ever plan on visiting us here in Boston, I’d love to meet you. Just give me a day’s notice, and I’ll whip up your favorite cookies, cake, scones, pie, etc. You can also contact me with questions whenever, at 617.300.2668 or sadie_roosa [at] wgbh [dot] org. Unfortunately, I haven’t yet discovered how to send muffins as email attachments.

1st American Archive Meet-up: July 9 at 10am ET

A couple of weeks ago we shared a blog post introducing an opportunity for stations to discuss and continue to learn about how to preserve your station’s history. American Archive Meet-ups will take place as informal video conference calls among American Archive participating stations and organizations to discuss issues related to archiving and preserving your materials.

(I hope you are as excited about this as we are!)

Our first meet-up is happening on July 9 at 10am ET. If you’re interested in joining the call, please fill out the form below or email Casey at casey_davis [at] wgbh [dot] org so that we can add you to the invite.

PS – You don’t have to commit to attending every meet-up in order to join the meet-ups. We’ll send out a topic agenda before each call, and if the topic peaks your interest, you’re free to drop in to discuss it with us.

If You’re a PBCore User and You Know It Write to Us…

If you’re a PBCore user and you know it, then our website and Wikipedia page will show it!

We’re updating our website and Wikipedia page to demonstrate the variety of wonderful organizations that use PBCore to manage and share their data. Can we include your station’s name on our list?

Please respond to to let us know if we can add your station or to ask any questions.

As always, thank you for your support!

Grant Opportunity: Grammy Foundation Archiving and Preservation Projects

The Grammy Foundation has just announced that they are accepting grant proposals for music and recorded sound archiving and preservation projects. The program has two funding categories: Preservation Implementation ($20,000 maximum award) and Preservation Assistance ($5,000 maximum award), and more information about these categories can be found here.

If your station is interested in applying for a grant, our team would love to collaborate with you on adding an American Archive component to your project!

Join the American Archive Meet-Ups

We’re organizing a meet-up among the American Archive team and participating stations and organizations to talk about issues related to archiving, digital file management, storage and preservation best practices, metadata, working with volunteers and interns, and other archival-related topics that participants want to discuss. The meet-ups will be very informal and will provide an opportunity for stations to gather feedback from the American Archive team and learn about how others are preserving their stations’ archives.

We’ll be organizing the meet-ups as small groups on a rotating schedule so that we can maintain an ease of conversation during the phone calls. If you’re interested in joining a group, please fill out the form and we’ll get in touch with you to let you know who is in your group and when we’ll be meeting.

Update your bookmarks for the AMS!

The team at AudioVisual Preservation Solutions (AVPS) has just completed their contract with the American Archive to build the Archival Management System (AMS). The AMS is a database where stations can access their records created during the Content Inventory Project and view the files that have been digitized through the American Archive Digitization Project.

The new URL for the AMS is Please update your bookmarks accordingly.

We have also created several guides to help you and your staff navigate the AMS, which you can find here.


PBS Annual Meeting Presentation & Takeaways

The American Archive team from WGBH presented at the PBS Annual Meeting in San Francisco. We had the wonderful opportunity to meet many of our station collaborators in person and gather tremendously useful feedback from participants. Many thanks to all of those who attended the session and reception, as well as those who took the time to meet with us at other moments during the conference. Additionally, we are sincerely grateful to our co-presenters, Sandy Schonning from KQED and Laura Sampson from Rocky Mountain PBS’ Stations Archived Memories program.

Below we’ve provided our Annual Meeting slideshow, divided into three sections: 1) history and progress of the American Archive, 2) stories from stations, and 3) discussion. During the discussion section, we asked a series of questions, and in this version of the presentation you will find a summary of the answers. If your organization is participating in the American Archive, please feel free to comment on this post with your answers to these questions (or questions about these questions!).

Feel free to email any of our session presenters:

Karen Cariani, Director
WGBH Media Library & Archives
karen_cariani [at] wgbh [dot] org

Casey E. Davis, Project Manager, American Archive
WGBH Media Library & Archives
casey_davis [at] wgbh [dot] org

Laura Sampson, Rocky Mountain PBS
Stations Archived Memories 

laurasampson [at] me [dot] com

Sandy Schonning, KQED
sschonning [at] kqed [dot] org

Meet American Archive Intern Bryce Roe

Hello, my name is Bryce and I’m excited to be a part of the American Archive of Public Broadcasting team at WGBH this summer! Like the wonderful previous interns, Alyson and Bill, who paved the way for me (nice work guys!), I am a Simmons LIS graduate student specializing in Archives Management.

I first became interested in archives as an undergraduate musicology student, where much of my research time was spent searching for relevant sound and video recordings in the conservatory. I adamantly sought the use of these recordings as a more experiential avenue for learning beyond the text. In addition to animating my research, working with AV materials in the archives also quickly taught me that I was more interested in the recordings themselves than in synthesizing my projects. I became more motivated by questions of how we assign and derive meaning from sounds and moving images and how we preserve and enable these materials to continually invite new experiences.

I am anxious to tackle these questions and help people do research with sound and video. I love learning what sparks people’s interests and strategizing how to facilitate access to the materials that will help them most. It’s very cool to think that historians and archeologists of the future will be able to hear and see us (hopefully with a lot less digging?)! I ultimately hope to broaden the formats and voices embraced by archival practices as well as the kinds of research we do with them, and WGBH is the perfect place to learn!

Below I’ve shared a clip from the American Archive collection that I was personally thrilled to discover. It is from an interview and rehearsal with the late jazz composer and pianist Dave Brubeck as he prepares to perform a 50th anniversary concert at my alma mater, Oberlin College.

The celebrated original performance took place on March 2, 1953, in the campus’ Finney Chapel, where Brubeck and his quartet (Paul Desmond, alto sax; Lloyd David, drums; Ron Crotty, bass) famously introduced jazz to a whole new audience outside of the nightclub – the American undergraduate. Previously, jazz wasn’t even allowed to be played in most conservatory practice rooms, let alone on a concert stage. A few students rounded up the cash themselves to invite Brubeck, who was given a shoddy piano to perform on by the faculty, but a warm welcome from the audience.

In addition to launching Brubeck’s career, the performance helped inspire the now world-renowned jazz program at Oberlin. To our great fortune, the performance was also recorded by the college radio station, WOBC, resulting in the landmark album Jazz at Oberlin. Though I’d listened to hundreds of albums previously, as an undergraduate student learning about the history of jazz at Oberlin, this recording incited an appreciation for the enduring value of historical sounds for my research and enjoyment. The audience’s excitement during this initiation is audible, and you can sense their embrace of the new sounds.

The clip below offers Dave Brubeck’s fond recollection of the night that changed his career and jazz in American. Enjoy! 

This post was written by Bryce Roe, intern for the American Archive of Public Broadcasting at WGBH.

New Guides on the Website

Two new guides were published on the website today that will help stations export their records from the Archival Management System as well as add additional staff members as users or admins. Click on the links below to learn more:

  • Exporting Your Records: this guide provides instructions for exporting your records from the Archival Management System for quick access.
  • Adding a Station User or Admin: here you can find instructions for adding additional staff members as users or admins on the Archival Management System, allowing them to access or edit your stations records.

You can also find links to all of the guides here: