Kicking and Screaming Into the 21st Century: Transforming Legacy Data

In April, Julie Blair and Beth Russell from the Michigan Tech Archives attended the Society of Indiana Archivists annual meeting in Indianapolis.  The two presented a session about the current grant the Archives is working on, an NHPRC funded “basic” grant to improve collection description and access, especially pertinent for a geographically remote location like Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula.  As the Assistant Archivist at Michigan Tech, Julie Blair discussed the grant application process and the software evaluation, especially the decisions made prior to the hire of the project cataloging archivist.  She described the lessons learned from the process and forecast the path forward.  As the Project Cataloging Archivist, Beth Russell outlined the challenges of transforming legacy data in multiple formats into DACS compliant records and creating MARC records for dissemination through OCLC’s WorldCat and Michigan Tech’s WebVoyage OPAC.  She also talked about problems encountered with the software and the challenges of changing software in the middle of a grant project.

A link on the Society of Indiana Archivists’ website includes their  PowerPoint presentation.  Click the link to “Kicking and Screaming Into the 21st Century: Transforming Legacy Data” to check out their presentation. Any questions or comments, contact either Julie, Beth, or the Archives.