See 1986 (January through December) Monthly Reports generated by the Penn State Project Staff for details on their cataloging accomplishments, statistics and discoveries. Counties completed by the Penn State Project staff in 1986 (January through June) were:
Mifflin, Juniata, Sullivan, Montour
University of Pittsburgh Project staff continued to input data compiled by the Penn State Project staff for central and north central Pennsylvania, and to provide CONSER authentication for all sites.
Matching funds had not yet been raised by the General Assembly to keep the Pennsylvania Newspaper Project going beyond June 30. $82,000 was needed before July 1 if work was to continue for 1986.
Note: A total of $112,419 was to have been provided by the state legislature in matching funds to secure a $312,418 grant from NEH. To date, only $30,000 of that original amount had been appropriated.
Plans were tentatively underway to close down the Project at the Penn State cataloging site by June 30. The State Library, the Historical Society of Pennsylvania and the University of Pittsburgh would be able to keep some staff on through December 1986 due to salary savings and other internal funding sources.
Amy Newell from the Penn State University Libraries Special Collections Library was hired by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania to work on planning the microfilming phase of the Newspaper Project.
Technical Committee was “unanimous in its insistence” that Becky Wilson and Sue Kellerman attend the OCLC suite at ALA (New York) on June 30 and July 1 to “instruct” those in attendance about “working in the field.”
Cataloging work for the northeast counties was scheduled for 1987. Becky and Sue expressed an interested in taking on this work.
NEH reduced the Project’s matching requirement to 80/20 for 1987 and beyond.
Barbara Smith and the Penn State Project staff visited legislators at the Harrisburg Capital Building seeking funds for the Pennsylvania Newspaper Project.
Barbara Smith sent a memo and a sample letter to the Penn State University Libraries department heads and administrators urging them to contact their local legislators and others requesting funding for the Project. Barbara noted in her memo that “Letters to [Representatives] Rudy, Herman, McClatchy, Pievsky, [Senators] Jubelirer, Corman, Tilghman and to the Governor [Thornburgh] himself are particularly important.”
On behalf of the statewide Project State Library Project Cataloger Susan Bryson entered “MAKE MY DATA” in the annual OCLC button slogan contest.
Penn State University Libraries and the Penn State Project staff submitted a proposal to the State Library to inventory and catalog the newspapers in 10 counties in northeastern Pennsylvania in 1987; January 1 through December 31.
Ruth Carter, Project coordinator at the University of Pittsburgh, submitted a request to the University of Pittsburgh’s Central Research Development Fund to cover a funding gap in the amount of $2,850.85. The request was to support the cataloging phase of the PA Newspaper Project is western Pennsylvania for the period July 1 through December 31, 1986. The funds were to maintain student assistant hours (500 hours at $4/hour) plus travel monies for field work in Washington, Beaver and Indiana counties.
The University of Pittsburgh newspaper collections were completely cataloged. Pittsburgh Project staff begun to catalog collections held at the Historical Society of Western Pennsylvania and the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.
NEH granted a funding supplement in the amount of $88,041 to the State Library for continuation of the cataloging phase (through 1986) and provide staff and operating costs for preparation of the microfilming phase.
With funding secured, the Penn State Project staff continued their cataloging work. Cataloging the newspaper collections held at the Penn State University were completed, and the holdings of 217 sites from 14 central and north central Pennsylvania counties were surveyed.
The 475-title collection at the Free Library of Philadelphia was cataloged.
University of Pittsburgh Project staff began field work in the 10 southwestern Pennsylvania counties. It was anticipated that it would require the remainder of 1986, all of 1987 and some months in 1988 to complete this assignment.
Glenmede Trust Company, representing the Pew Memorial Trust, awarded the Historical Society of Pennsylvania $300,000 to support their work on the Project, the statewide microfilming project and the microfilming of newspapers from the 5-county southeastern Pennsylvania area.
The State Library submitted an NEH grant application in the amount of $505,602 (outright request) for the completion of the newspaper cataloging phase and the microfilming phase for the period January 1987 through December 1989.
Noted in the NEH grant application was that the State Library accepted responsibility for keeping holdings data current once the Pennsylvania Newspaper Project ended. Repositories whose collections had been cataloged signed a release form agreeing to public access of the holdings. Each repository was given a certificate noting that the holdings were entered into the OCLC database, and that the State Library should be notified if there were titles to be added, withdrawn, or paper copies replaced with microfilm. The task of updating the holdings records would be accomplished by the regular staff of the State Library.
The University of Pittsburgh’s Central Research Development Fund awarded the University of Pittsburgh’s Project $2,851 to support the Project at the University of Pittsburgh site.
Cumulative statistics for Pennsylvania Newspaper Project entries in the OCLC database, from the beginning of the Project in 1985 through June 1986 were:
New cataloging records created: 1,657
New Local Data Holdings records created: 4,347
These figures represented workforms which had final CONSER authentication at the University of Pittsburgh.
See 1986 (January through December) Monthly Reports generated by the Penn State Project Staff for details on their cataloging accomplishments, statistics and discoveries. Counties completed by the Penn State Project staff in 1986 (July through December) were:
Somerset, Fulton, Cambria, Huntingdon, Blair, Bedford
Inventorying of the newspaper collection held at Penn State’s Pattee Library was completed from 8 locations, 1,080 titles.
Penn State Project completed its 5th photo album of field work visits.
Pennsylvania welcomed NEH’s decision to allow state projects to begin microfilming before cataloging was completed.
NEH awarded supplemental funding in the amount of $22,487.60 to the State Library to employ a Microfilming Project Coordinator and a project assistant to handle the development of the list of papers to microfilm, July through December 1986.
William “Bill” Hamill was hired as the Pennsylvania Newspaper Project Microfilming Coordinator.
The Historical Society of Pennsylvania was assigned to manage the Pennsylvania Newspaper Project Microfilming Program on behalf of the statewide project.
The State Library Project and Penn State Project purchased PowerBase management software to create databases of titles, holdings and repositories. The University of Pittsburgh Project was at the beginning stages of using PC-File II to build their database. Questions were raised on how to incorporate Pittsburgh’s database since they were using a different software program.
The special issue of Cataloging and Classification Quarterly on “The United States Newspaper Program: Cataloging Aspects”, edited by Ruth C. Carter was published. The publication featured articles from the Penn State and University of Pittsburgh cataloging sites.
The Technical Committee met August 20 to discuss the microfilming program, the selection process and how title lists would be developed.
Microfilming specifications were developed at the State Library, in collaboration with the Historical Society of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission. Standards for filming and quality control guidelines were outlined. The process included the production of a preservation master, a production negative and a silver positive to be used for on-demand copying. In addition, vesicular positive service copies would be produced for the repository that provided the papers for microfilming and for the State Library for interlibrary loan purposes.
The Project established a process to catalog “single issues” by mail.
A pre-proposal microfilm conference for prospective microfilming vendors was held in Harrisburg on October 8. Eleven microfilm vendors attended.
Additional conditions of the microfilming program were refined and included: 1) the State Library must have unrestricted right to distribute copies of the microfilm via interlibrary loan; 2) the State Library must retain, for proper storage, the preservation master, and 3) the State Library of the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission must have unrestricted right to prepare and distribute service copies of the microfilm.
Sealed bids for the microfilming phase of the Pennsylvania Newspaper Project were received. A committee with representatives from the State Library, the State Archives and the Historical Society of Pennsylvania reviewed the bids.
The Penn State Project staff participated in the selection of titles to be microfilmed – mostly long runs. The treatment of single issues remained an unresolved problem.
Pennsylvania ordered two OCLC offline products (paper copies) that reflected data in the online union list. The option of having this product available soon in a new format, on a CD-ROM, was seen as an opportunity to distribute the data to hundreds of libraries as long as they had the appropriate equipment for this format.
After reviewing the findings of the Penn State Project staff to film single issues of newspapers using a 35mm camera, the Advisory Council advised against taking this approach. The Council felt that this effort “would require a considerable investment of time and resources, and that single issues of newspapers were of limited value to historians.”
The Advisory Council at its November 13 meeting re-affirmed their position that the Project would not, except in unusual circumstances, microfilm post-1980 newspapers, but would seek to persuade current publishers to accept responsibility for their preservation. Furthermore, the Council suggested the development of a handout which addressed “what to do if you are not going to keep post-1980 papers” and suggested that the Pennsylvania Library Association be encouraged to adopt the preservation of post-1980 papers as a project.
The Advisory Council, the Technical Committee, Project Staff from the four cataloging sites and the Microfilming Coordinator met at the State Library in Harrisburg. It was noted in the January 1987 Pennsylvania Newspaper Reporter, that among the interesting facts shared at the meeting was that the “Back files of newspapers, are stored in such a variety of places that persistence, skill in detection, and freedom from fear are essential qualities for a good cataloger.”
As recorded in the Penn State Project’s Daily Journal at the end of the month: “November brought to a close the many site visits so thoroughly enjoyed over the past 22 months. The variety of experiences and cooperation and good will of people met would fill a book. Indeed it has! Sue is on volume 6 of her daily journal.”
It was noted in David Hoffman’s NEH Final Report for the period July – December 1986 that developing a list of titles to be filmed, “is perhaps the most difficult task yet undertaken, as the funding levels will apparently permit Pennsylvania to film fewer than half of the titles which have been found in the bibliographic phase.” The report went on to say: “Despite the generous matching grant offered by the Endowment, Pennsylvania will have to provide a very large amount of money if the Commonwealth’s newspapers are to be filmed to assure their survival and extend access to the material contained in them.”
NEH awarded $206,744 to the State Library to continue the Project cataloging phase. NEH also indicated its intention to award an additional $144,748 in 1988, and $154,110 in 1989 as outright funds to complete the cataloging work in Pennsylvania. NEH also offered a $300,000 challenge grant to initiate a 3-year microfilming program. Funds would be disbursed at the rate of $75,000 in FY 87, $100,000 in FY 88, and $125,000 in FY 89 subject to the “certification of equal amounts of eligible gifts.”
Note: $75,000 of the challenge grant match was appropriated by the Department of Education by the Pennsylvania General Assembly for the 1987 fiscal year.
The other regional cataloging sites adopted the Penn State Project site’s data management system in the creation of their own database.
Cumulative statistics for Pennsylvania Newspaper Project entries in the OCLC database, from the beginning of the Project in 1985 through December 1986 were:
New cataloging records created: 2,944
New Local Data Holdings records created: 10,627
These figures represented workforms which had final CONSER authentication at the University of Pittsburgh.