There's been great interest in our genealogy collection plans and an outpouring of ideas, expert advice and dedicated volunteer support. We are most appreciative and thank all who have contacted us. Here's an update on collection plans.
The new Genealogy Center at the Polly Rosenbaum Archives & History Building opened last week with a ready-reference collection of the most used reference materials along with additional computers in the Reading Room. Any titles not in ready-reference that concern Arizona were moved to the State Archives' Arizona Collection. They will add to the existing 75,000-item Arizona Collection enhancing an outstanding resource for researchers.
Representatives from the genealogy community have been lending their expertise and experience to the project. They are working with staff to review the remaining items in the collection of 20,000 items. We have made tremendous progress thanks to volunteers from the genealogy community like Suzanne Brayer, Katie Gertz, Roseanne Hein, Connie Sheets and Dee Snook. We're also working on a soon-to-be-announced plan to digitize about 5,000 of the titles. Sites like FamilySearch, HathiTrust, Google Books, Internet Archive already have digital copies of these books as well.
Representatives from the Family History Society of Arizona, Arizona Historical Society, Arizona Genealogy Advisory Board, Museum Association of Arizona, West Valley Genealogy Center, Northern Arizona Genealogy Society, Irish Cultural Center and other genealogy researchers provided guidance on next steps. We are working with them to develop options for the collection based on usage, online accessibility, and whether the material is readily available in another Arizona library.
We are very pleased with the ideas we have heard from individuals and organizations statewide - and even out-of-state in regards to digital access to records outside Arizona.
Thank you again for your interest in this valuable Arizona resource and special kudos to our wonderful volunteers!
The Polly Rosenbaum Archives & History Building; 1901 W. Madison St., Phoenix; is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Our knowledgeable staff can be reached at 602-926-3720.
Access to Gale Genealogy Connect is available 24 hours, seven days a week through the Digital Arizona Library. Even more online resources can be found at on the State Archives Ancestry and Genealogy page. Access to research databases such as HeritageQuest and Ancestry is available both at the State Library, 1700 W. Washington St., Phoenix; and the Polly Rosenbaum Archives & History Building.