Thursday, July 15, 2010

Meet the Staff: Frances Morgan

Frances Morgan is Manager of the Bill Clinton State Government Project. She graciously agreed to answer a few questions about being an archivist.

What is an archivist?

An archivist is a professional who appraises, arranges, preserves, describes and makes available to researchers information determined to have long-term value.

What made you want to be an archivist? How did you get into this line of work?

I love history! My undergrad major was history and when I learned of the graduate degree program in Public History at UALR I decided to enter. My graduate assistantship was in the old Arkansiana Room at CALS and it was there that I became interested in archival management.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

My staff and I spend most of our day processing the materials in the Clinton Project. I’ve found that I’m enjoying learning about how Arkansas government works. I was never interested in political science before, but I’m seriously considering getting another undergrad degree in that discipline.

What is the oddest/most interesting thing/etc. you have found in a collection?

Over ten years ago, I worked on the Jay Miller Aviation Collection. A couple of my most interesting finds were a box of dirty, tattered T-shirts with various aviation logos on their fronts and, in another box, all sorts of in-flight snacks that included dried-up and melted chocolate. But the MOST interesting find was the World War I hand-held bomb. That type of bomb was held over the side of the airplane and dropped on the target by hand!


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