From the Editor’s Desk

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In our last issue, I told you about the staff changes which had taken place in the Archives (which also produces this Newsletter) last summer . In the future, I shall continue to inform you of other changes which I hope will interest you. We have , on our shelves, a goodly number of microfilm reels containing extremely valuable material dating from the early days of the Province. For instance, we have the Chronicles of old St. Mary’s in Dunkirk, NY. While St. Mary’s was closed years ago it was, nevertheless, the second oldest (after Pittsburgh) monastery of our Province. There is much, much more on these microfilms rolls; perhaps someday we will publish a complete list for your information.

The problem was that we had no microfilm reader! Consequently this gold mine was effectively closed to researchers. After consulting with fellow archivists, especially Mr. Russell Gasero, archivist of the Reformed Church in the USA and Chairman of the Archivists of Religious Institutions, an ecumenical organization in the Tri-State area, I was able to locate a Connecticut firm which not only sold new microfilm readers but also handled refurbished readers. For $750 I was able to buy a completely refurbished microfilm reader/printer which enables one to print out the same image one is looking at on the machine. (A new “bottom-of-the line” machine would have cost us over $2000.)

I have also hired Ms. Mariann Natalicchio who worked here during July and August to inventory the box-fulls of material which need to be catalogued . She will bring this material under intellectual control and enable Sister Anita to enter it into our electronic data base. Mariann is steadily working her way through all this material. Mariann teaches school and also has archival experience, having worked in the Seton Hall University archives for eight years.

Finally, an invitation. If you are in the New York City metropolitan area please feel free to drop in and visit the archives. A call in advance would be appreciated, but we do want you to know you are welcome!

Morgan Hanlon, CP, Editor

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