THRAB Presents Free Workshops on Emergency Response and Salvage

Find a site near you and register now for the THRAB workshop, Emergency Response and Salvage. Cultural Heritage Preservation Consultant Rebecca Elder presents at multiple locations an all-day, hands-on workshop on recovering collections from disasters. Registrants will be asked to view recordings from previous webinars on emergency planning before attending the on-site workshop. Emergency Response and Salvage will take place at each site from 8:30am – 4:30pm. Further details will be provided to registrants for their selected location. Funding for THRAB provided by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission. Space is limited.

Workshop locations and dates:

April 8, 2022           Fort Worth Public Library

April 12, 2022          Rosenberg Library (Galveston)

April 13, 2022          Mary and John Gray Library / Lamar University (Beaumont)

April 15, 2022          Archives and Research Center / Texas State University Library (San Marcos)

April 21, 2022          Victoria Regional History Center – UHV Library / University of Houston – Victoria

Select your site and register by March 31, 2022 here:

THRAB Offers Opportunity for Free Registration to Basics of Archives Online Course

The Texas Historical Records Advisory Board (THRAB) is pleased to offer an educational opportunity free of charge to individuals working with historical collections and who lack a background or formal training in archives. Through funding from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC), THRAB has partnered with the American Association of State and Local History (AASLH) to reserve a select number of spots in their upcoming beginner’s course, Basics of Archives. Designed for those with little to no archival experience, the AASLH instructor presents modules online over five weeks, with lessons covering the essential components of archives work from acquisition to outreach.  For more information about applying for free registration, visit:

Applications due August 31.

THRAB initiatives supported through funding from the NHPRC. THRAB serves as the State Historical Records Advisory Board for Texas. Visit for more information.

THRAB Offers Free Webinar Series: Creating an Emergency Preparedness and Response Plan

The Texas Historical Records Advisory Board (THRAB) invites participants to develop an Emergency Preparedness and Response Plan for their archival repositories with a free webinar series launching May 20. Over the course of five weeks, professional consultant Rebecca Elder of Elder Cultural Heritage Preservation will guide participants through the step-by-step process of creating an Emergency Preparedness and Response Plan for their archival repositories. Each 90-minute webinar will focus on components of building a plan, with the final installment an opportunity to assess draft plans and review potential implementation concerns. The topics are as follows:

Week 1: Emergency Planning Basics and the Emergency Team

Week 2: Risk Assessment and Choosing a Plan Template

Week 3: Contact Lists and Salvage Priorities

Week 4: Procedures, Supplies and Implementation

Week 5: How Did It Go?

Registration is for the series. Please note that week two covers risk assessment, which would typically require access to the repository. Those not able to make on-site visits because of COVID -19 may need to address the more specific details of this module at a later date. Register here:

Support for this project provided by the National Historic Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC), the funding arm of the National Archives.

THRAB Offering Free SAA Workshops at the State Archives

As part of its efforts to support education and training for archivists, librarians and others charged with preserving and providing access to the rich documentary heritage of the state, the Texas Historical Records Advisory Board (THRAB) is pleased to announce two free workshops on issues relating to digital collections. The Society of American Archives (SAA) developed these workshops as part of its Digital Archives Specialist curriculum and are open to archivists, librarians and staff members working at Texas archival repositories and charged with managing digital projects. Registration is limited to 30 attendees.

“Privacy and Confidentiality Issues in Digital Archives” takes place on Friday, November 22, 2019 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. “Building Digital Advocacy” will be held on Thursday, December 12, 2019 from 9 a. m. to 5 p.m. Both workshops will take place in the Tocker Learning Center at the Texas State Library and Archives Commission (TSLAC) located at 1201 Brazos Street in Austin.

According to SAA, “Privacy and Confidentiality Issues in Digital Archives” covers privacy and confidentiality legal issues specific to archives of digital material. Topics include free speech, third-party rights, donors, national security legislation and special situations like medical and education records.

“Building Digital Advocacy” provides attendees with the tools to obtain support for digital archives. Instructors will offer strategies for connecting with donors of materials, technology staff and others who are essential to successful digital archives management.

To learn more about these opportunities and to register, visit THRAB’s professional development webpage at Deadline to register is October 25, 2019.

Funding for these workshops is provided by a grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission. 

Celebrate Archives Month in October!

Texas archivists celebrate Texas Archives Month in conjunction with American Archives Month each October. Texas archival institutions, repositories and organizations are offering exhibits and activities as we raise awareness about what archives have in our holdings and what archivists do with our collections. Webinars, workshops and exhibits will be on offer throughout the month.

Watch how archivists tag images for preservation and access during the University of North Texas Special Collections’ metadata live stream or log-in for a webinar on Native American boarding school records from the Society of American Archivists (SAA). Want to learn how to preserve your personal digital archive? The Texas State Library and Archives Commission has a workshop for that! And hop on to Twitter on October 2 when archivists from TSLAC and other repositories participate in #AskAnArchivist Day. We are also promoting archival activities that you should make plans to attend later in the fall. You will find Archives Bazaars happening in Houston and Denton, for instance, and SAA workshops at the Texas State Library and Archives Commission.

The Texas Historical Records Advisory Board (THRAB) maintains a Texas Archives Month webpage to keep track of all these happenings across the state.THRAB announces the annual Award for Archival Excellence as part of the Texas Archives Month celebrations and, as was recently reported here, the Texas Archives Month poster is up and available for download from the site. Keep an eye on Out of the Stacks for announcements about these and other archival activities coming up.

Happy Texas Archives Month!

Second Saturday Workshops Continue with Introduction to Newspaper Collections

Researchers encounter newspapers in libraries and archives on microfilm, in old bound volumes and through online databases that allow users to keyword search entire collections of digitized issues dating back decades and even centuries. The next installment in the Texas State Library and Archives Commission’s monthly workshop series covers the various methods of locating and using these resources with an Introduction to Newspaper Collections.

Brenham Banner-Press, 12-8-1941. Original newspaper from the Archives and Information Services Division, Texas State Library and Archives Commission.

TSLAC reference staff will guide participants through our newspaper resources in a free, 20-minute orientation session beginning at 10a.m. on September 14, 2019. Registration is encouraged but not required. Visit our workshop page for descriptions and a full schedule of topics or go ahead and register here.

THRAB Emergency Planning and Response Workshops Prepare Archivists for Disasters

American Institute for Conservation’s “Emergency Response and Salvage Wheel” and other sample resources from THRAB’s Emergency Planning and Response workshops.

The Texas Historical Records Advisory Board (THRAB) serves the archival community with a range of ongoing efforts supporting the preservation of the historical record. With funding from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC), THRAB provides free training opportunities to those working in repositories around the state. As part of the offerings for 2019, THRAB coordinated a series of educational webinars and workshops designed to help archivists combat threats from natural and other disasters by preparing collections and staff for such emergencies. Rebecca Elder, a preservation consultant who runs Elder Preservation, created and taught the Emergency Planning and Response series, which included hands-on workshops complete with wet-salvage exercises and a two-part online component.

On-site workshops were held over two days and addressed each phase of dealing with major emergency situations in an archive. Elder guided participants through processes like developing an emergency plan, assembling a team, establishing salvage priorities and purchasing appropriate supplies and disaster gear. Workshop participants performed a risk assessment exercise in the facilities in which the workshops took place and learned to identify possible threats.

Day two involved a wet-salvage project where participants learned methods of handling and recovering soaked papers, books, posters, cassette tapes, computer disks, negatives and photographs. The images above capture participants in action as they work on recovery techniques.THRAB offered the workshop at Rice University’s Fondren Library in Houston and the TSLAC’s State Records Center in North Austin.

THRAB also supports the various Archives Bazaars happening across Texas in 2019 and 2020, produces an Archives Month poster each October, honors institutions and individuals with the Archival Award of Excellence and funds a Special Award for National History Day with the Texas State Historical Association’s Texas History Day program. Keep up with THRAB happenings at

Prepare Collections for Disasters and Learn Recovery Skills with THRAB’s Emergency Planning Workshop Series

The Texas Historical Records Advisory Board (THRAB) is offering in 2019 a series of professional development opportunities to equip those caring for archival materials with the knowledge, skills and hands-on experience needed to prepare repositories for threats and recover damaged collections. THRAB has contracted with Cultural Heritage Preservation Consultant Rebecca Elder to teach two 90-minute webinars on emergency planning and two-day hands-on workshops in Austin and Houston. Funded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC), workshops are provided free of charge and available to those working in Texas repositories. Registration is now open for the webinars:

  • Webinar: Emergency Preparedness        4/23/2019 10 -11:30 a.m
  • Webinar: Emergency Response               5/01/2019 10 -11:30 a.m.

Hands-on workshops are scheduled for June 13-14 in Austin and in Houston June 27-28. Each will be a two-day event. The first day will focus on emergency preparedness, and the second day will focus on response, including a wet salvage exercise. Each workshop will be limited to 20 attendees working for a Texas repository. Registration will open in early May. Please note that THRAB may limit registration to one person per institution to allocate space equitably.

Rebecca Elder is a seasoned preservation consultant who works with the staff of cultural heritage institutions to care for their historical collections. Elder holds a Master’s in Information Science from the University of Texas and is a former field services officer for Amigos Preservation Services. She currently teaches preservation management at the University of Texas iSchool and courses online at Kent State.

Funding for THRAB workshops provided by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

State Archives Offering Research Workshops on Second Saturdays

Beginning in January, the Texas State Library and Archives Commission (TSLAC) will offer resource orientation workshops at 10 a.m. each Second Saturday of 2019. The workshops highlight key tools researchers may use at the State Archives or through the website, with each 20-minute session focusing on one essential resource. Reference staff will present on Texas city directories, county records, newspaper collections, vital statistics, U.S. Census records and (Texas Collection).  The sequence repeats after the first cycle ends in June.

Researchers using Reference Library computers.

The free workshops should appeal to a wide range of patrons interested in library research. Those still familiarizing themselves with the assortment of access points one must navigate to discover source materials may find all of the topics germane, while the more practiced patrons may have specific collections in mind. Guests are invited to stay on and use TSLAC’s public service areas for their research activities until the library closes at 4 p.m. (Learn more about visiting the library here.) Here is the 2019 Second Saturday Workshop Series schedule:

Searching the Census Online                                              Jan. 12   |  July 13

Introduction to Newspaper Collections                                 March 9  |  Sept. 14          

Introduction to Texas County Records                                  April 13   |  Oct. 12 Texas Collections                                           May 11   |  Nov. 9

Introduction to City Directories                                              June  8  |  Dec. 14

Registration is preferred but not required. Walk-ins are always welcome! For more information and to register visit