Friday, January 18, 2013

National Archivist Interested in Navy Records


David S. Ferriero was confirmed as 10th Archivist of the United States on November 6, 2009.

Previously, Mr. Ferriero served as the Andrew W. Mellon Director of the New York Public Libraries (NYPL). He was part of the leadership team responsible for integrating the four research libraries and 87 branch libraries into one seamless service for users, creating the largest public library system in the United States and one of the largest research libraries in the world. Mr. Ferriero was in charge of collection strategy; conservation; digital experience; reference and research services; and education, programming, and exhibitions.

As a Navy veteran I have a particular fondness for U.S. Navy records, especially deck logs. From my first days here at the National Archives when I discovered that we had the actual deck logs from the US S Constitution including her service during the War of 1812 to the day I was handed a deck log of the USS Sanctuary, AH-17 , covering my time aboard that hospital ship in Viet Nam I have been hooked on this record series!
So, it was a real treat to learn that NOAA had approached us in April of 2011 with the idea of digitally imaging the logs of Navy and Coast Guard Revenue Cutter vessels as part of their work with to document weather conditions in the North Pacific Arctic region during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. In a wonderful crowd sourcing venture, volunteers working with transcribe handwritten weather observations as well as log entries on vessel movement and activities. It is a win-win cross agency collaboration—NOAA gets the weather data and NARA gets the digital images for posting.

Scanning began in July 2012 and so far the logbooks of ten vessels have been completed and 65,000 images posted to our Archival Research Catalog.

Pressed flowers were found in the USRC Corwin log entry for 14 January 1891 from Port Townsend, Washington with the entry.

 Bill Kelly's Comment to National Archivst 

As Archivist of the USA and former Navy vet you should also be interested in the fact that the records related to the assassination of President Kennedy of the Director of the Office of Naval Intelligence Admiral Rufus Taylor are missing, and should be located and the US Navy officer who attempted to locate them was threatened with court martial for trying. In addition, the NARA JFK Collection on line database should be updated listing those records still being withheld and the most frequently requested JFK assassination records should be posted on line so students and researchers don’t have to keep requesting them. There is more interest in the JFK Assassination records than any other subject, yet the NARA refuses to enforce the JFK Act and determine why there are so many records destroyed, missing and being wrongfully withheld. Thank you for your interest. (January 18, 2013 at 1:26 pm)

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