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  Archived Posts From: 2014


How Do I Preserve My Documents, Photographs and Digital Memories?

Written on: February 28th, 2014 in Blog PostsDelaware HistoryEvents at the ArchivesPhotographspreservationResearch Room

Looking for a way to preserve those family photos and videos for future generations to see? On Saturday, March 15 at 10:30 a.m., the Delaware Public Archives will show how to preserve items such as old photographs, documents and digitized memories on CDs, DVDs, and flash drives. This workshop will provide you with the knowledge needed to care for and preserve those irreplaceable memories. This preservation workshop will be presented by the staff of the Delaware Public Archives (DPA) and the Delaware Government Information Center (GIC) and will include basic information and instruction on proper handling and storage of family papers, photographs and digital media to ensure long term preservation.

Archives staff member, Sarah Denison, will present information on the conservation and preservation of paper documents and photographs. Ms. Denison has processed a number of collections including Civil War letters in the Small Manuscript Collection, Board of Education photographs, Sussex County Orphans Court Records, and the Caley Postcard Collection. She has most recently completed the processing and cataloguing of the Vietnam Mailbag Collection.

Concerning digital records, Mike Mahaffie, Deputy Director GIC, will address what is needed to save your digital memories. Highlighting his discussion will be a quick history of ways people have been saving digital records, things to do to determine what is important, what is needed to maintain your digital moments as technology changes, and the various ways available to save what’s important to you based on cost and longevity.

The workshop is free to the public. No reservations are required. For more information, contact Tom Summers (302) 744-5047 or e-mail

Photo of Sarah Denison and Mike Mahaffie

Sarah Denison and Mike Mahaffie

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Searching for Your Irish Family Roots

Written on: February 20th, 2014 in Blog PostsDelaware HistoryEvents at the ArchivesResearch Room

On March 1, 10:30 a.m., the Delaware Public Archives will present a special Irish genealogical program by well-known Delaware genealogist Nancy Lyons entitled “Searching for Your Irish Family Roots.”

Ms. Lyons will focus on researching Irish American ancestry both online and in U.S. record repositories. Researchers will learn how to utilize the census, vital statistics, church documents, naturalizations, passenger lists and other essential record groups to fill in the blanks of their family trees. Ms. Lyons will also share additional reference resources such as internet sites and suggested reading material.

Nancy Lyons is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists and the National Genealogical Society. The founder of the Irish Family History Research Group, Lyons has volunteered at the Mormon Family History Center in Wilmington for 19 years. She also served as the chair of the Delaware Genealogical Society Educational Committee for nine years. Other memberships include Friends of the Delaware Archives, Delaware Genealogical Society, Downstate Delaware Genealogical Society, and the Sussex County Genealogical Society.

Ms. Lyons’ program is free to the public. No reservations are required. For more information, contact Tom Summers (302) 744-5047 or e-mail

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Lieutenant Governor Denn Proclaims February As African American History Month in Delaware

Written on: February 6th, 2014 in Blog PostsDelaware HistoryEvents at the ArchivesPhotographs

Delaware Lt. Governor Matt Denn joined Secretary of State Jeffrey Bullock today during a public ceremony to declare February 2014 as African American History Month. The ceremony was held at the Delaware Public Archives and this year’s announcement was special because 2014 marks the 60th anniversary of the monumental Brown v. Board of Education ruling that paved the way to integrate public schools in both Delaware and throughout the nation.

Lt. Governor Denn highlighted that “much of Delaware’s honor, strength and stature can be attributed to the diversity of cultures and traditions that are celebrated by the residents of this great state. We take this opportunity to celebrate African American History Month, in honor of the many contributions African Americans have made to the State of Delaware and our Nation.”

During the proclamation ceremony, the guest speakers explained to the audience the effect that the Brown v. Board decision had on their lives. Toriano Giddens, principal at William Henry Middle School, spoke about the effect the ruling has on today’s generation of students and how it has positively impacted the students at his school. In the 1950s, the William Henry School was a segregated high school, one of the few in the state where African American students could attend.

The featured speaker for the day was Dr. Homer W. Minus who discussed his status as one of the pioneers of the desegregation movement in Delaware when he served as a plaintiff in the Parker v. University of Delaware case. As part of a group of Delaware State College students who went to court to gain entry into the University of Delaware, Dr. Minus was one of the first seven African American students who were admitted to the University in the fall of 1950.

Following the ceremony, Stephen Marz, State Archivist and Director of the Delaware Public Archives, invited the attendees to meet Orlando Camp, co-author of the book “The Milford Eleven” and to visit the new Brown v. Board of Education Shadow Box Exhibit at the Archives. The display presents the history of the events that took place in Delaware which eventually led to the desegregation of the public school system in the First State. A special feature of the exhibit is a section focusing on the controversy surrounding the Milford crisis of 1954.


Photo Students from William Henry Middle School attending the ceremony along with their principal Mr. Giddens and staff member Ms. Bobbi English

Students from William Henry Middle School along with their principal Mr. Giddens and staff member Ms. Bobbi English


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