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State archivists to visit Tullahoma in search of Civil War memorabilia

Posted on Thursday, January 5, 2012 at 4:46 pm

Representatives from the Tennessee State Library and Archives and the Tennessee State Museum will be in Tullahoma on Thursday, Jan. 19, to record and digitize Civil War memorabilia owned by local residents for a new exhibit.

Archivists will be at the Tullahoma City Hall, 201 W. Grundy St. from 10:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. During that time, they invite area residents to bring in photographs, documents and other artifacts related to the Civil War.

The archivists will scan or take digital photographs of the materials, some of which will be featured in an exhibit titled, “Looking Back: The Civil War in Tennessee.” The archivists will not actually take possession of the items from their owners.

Individuals may call (615) 741-1883 or e-mail civilwar.tsla@tn.gov to schedule a reservation with the archivists. Reservation forms and available times may be found on the State Library and Archives’ section of the Office of the Secretary of State web site at http://tn.gov/tsla/cwtn/events.htm.

“This is an important project for the Tennessee State Library and Archives,” Secretary of State Tre Hargett said.

“The Civil War was a major event in our state’s history, so we need to take appropriate steps to make sure these treasures are properly preserved for future generations.”

Attendees at the event will receive copies of the digital photographs and tips on how to preserve their Civil War memorabilia.

Archivists plan to visit all 95 of Tennessee’s counties in search of material for the exhibit, which will commemorate the Civil War’s 150th anniversary.

“Participation in this new initiative, ‘Looking Back: The Civil War in Tennessee,’ is a chance for individuals to contribute to a permanent record of Civil War resources without leaving their communities,” Mayor Lane Curlee said.

While in Tullahoma, TSLA staff will digitize and provide guidance on basic conservation techniques. In return, participants will receive free digitization services, copies of the digital images, and the opportunity to have their Civil War manuscripts and artifacts preserved digitally for future generations.

To be considered eligible for digitization, items must pertain to the Civil War and be original items owned by the individual presenting them. No copyrighted or photocopies materials may be submitted. Due to time constraints only five items per person can be digitalized.

Examples of items suitable for the process include letters, photographs, diaries, uniforms or uniform pieces, weapons, claims filed for damages by the Confederate/Federal army, hand-drawn maps and sketches, military passes and discharges, medical records, pension materials, soldier quilts, flags, banners, buttons, ribbons, badges, broadsides, newspapers and medical implements. Photographs of individuals or groups should be identified if possible.

For more information and to make a reservation visit the website at www.tn.gov/tsla/cwtn/events.htm or contact Jami Awalt at 615 253-3470 or Jami.Awalt@tn.gov.