During the first Three Rivers Archivists meet-up of 2018, attendees gathered at the University of Pittsburgh’s Archives and Special Collections reading room on the 3rd floor of Hillman Library to share experiences from the Spring 2018 MARAC meeting, catch-up with one another, and discuss what the future holds for TRA.
Members discussed highlights from the MARAC meeting, which included panels on preserving Pennsylvania’s disability history, rights statements, working with living donors, pop-up exhibits, and collaborating with Native American researchers across the Smithsonian. Pronoun ribbons were lauded as a positive addition for conference-goers, as well as several sessions with interactive elements rather than traditional panel discussions. Details about two sessions in particular were shared: Documenting Communities and Movements in Real Time panel, which covered a wide range of tools archivists are employing to capture social justice movements as they unfold on social media, and Chester Made: Building The Biography of a Block with Artists, Students and Residents panel, an exciting collaborative approach to uncover and document the life and culture of Chester, PA.
Prior to an interesting show-and-tell of Special Collections materials, the group discussed identifying a more formalized steering committee structure to ensure organizational continuity, potential summer and fall programs, and broader TRA projects such as offering consultative record guidance to Pittsburgh-area organizations that may be closing, or outreach to neighborhood communities to support documentary practices.