September 26, 2017 – “The Goal In Sight”

Welcome back, everyone!

Today was going to be a day of learning new tools of the trade, but setbacks prevented otherwise. Nonetheless, there were other tasks to complete and new challenges to face as the final chapters of the O’Shaughnessy Collection processing were closing in. At this point it should be no surprise that as some problems are solved, new ones take their place. Today was no exception.

To start off I was to learn about how to file large materials such as posters, but the posters in the O’Shaughnessy Collection were curled to a degree where it be very difficult to do so. Chris Saclolo, whom I was learning from, suggested a method of flattening them out. After straightening them, we made to put a few panes of plexi sheets on top of them. Unfortunately, that is all we did with them. We will check on Friday whether they will be more manageable.

After that, I was determined to finish off reviewing the multimedia portion of the O’Shaughnessy Collection. I took a small detour to confirm a suspicion. In the first collection box are DVDs marked as “Hawaii Bowl History DVD.” I suspected that it would be DVD copies of the WESH 2 coverage from December 23, 2005. It turned out I was right, but also wrong. It did have material related to that special, but it turned out they were the raw interviews featured from that special. It was very impressive and invaluable for research.

As I was watching, one of the interviewees mentioned Dan Burke being part of the 1979 team. As a graduate of Palm Bay High School, I knew Burke as the coach of the Pirate football team and still is since 1996. It is nice to know that connection is there and I can relate to it.

After watching the interviews, I switched over to the final piece not reviewed. The final media piece was an audio CD that had the August 23, 2008 edition of Talkin’ Old School with Roger Franklin Williams. The host, Williams, had two guests on his show that day: Jerry O’Neill, who had been covering the Knights since 1994, and the one and only Michael O’Shaughnessy. It was neat hearing their perspectives how the Knights developed up to that point as well as their excitement over the approaching 2008 season. After recording the pertinent information, I had finished!

I decided to the time to answer the questions that were due next Monday. Here are the questions I chose:

1) What is your favorite thing about working in an archive?

My favorite thing about working in an archive is the hands-on learning experience gained while working on a collection. The feeling of holding a piece of history is all the difference than just reading about it online or in a text book. New materials are prepared in a way that would make them accessible to future generations that hopefully I will contribute to the ongoing mission of an archive.

2) What is an archive?

The vivid imagery that captures the imagination of what an archive is can best be seen in the final scene of Indiana Jones and The Raiders of the Lost Ark where the Ark of the Covenant is stored in Hangar 51. In reality, an archive can best be defined as a collection of significant items that are preserved for the purpose of research. There are many types of archives that have special subjects attached to them, but most are general in what is stored within them: publications, documents, ephemera, and even art. The history behind the items can help a researcher get to an understanding and answer questions that would otherwise linger as unanswered.

3) What have you worked on recently that you are proud of?

Currently, I am processing the Michael O’Shaughnessy Collection. Mr. O’Shaughnessy had donated material in 2006 and later in 2013, the latter is the majority of what I am working with. The reason being other than assigned to do it is I do not mind working with football related material and it has been a learning experience for me. Mr. O’Shaughnessy’s involvement was a defensive end on the UCF Fighting Knights from 1979 to 1980 to his contributions post graduation, such being involved as a Sunshine Network Radio contributor from 1990 to 1994. While I was learning about him, I was also learning about UCF Football history: their beginnings, their rise, the stumbling blocks, the major achievements. Mr. O’Shaughnessy was not just a figure who just happened to be at the start of a history still be written, but in many ways wanted give back and volunteer his time to something he loved. The whole experience has made me not only appreciate the UCF Knights more as they have come along way from 1979, but also gave an example of how someone can be more involved with a community like Mr. O’Shaughnessy has.

After submitting my answers to Ms. Rubin, it was time to start housing some of the VHS tapes, but I came to find that we may need to stock up on covers. A small set back, but I moved on to the audio cassettes and it was finished relatively quick. By the time this occurred, it was time leave.

That maybe the end for today, but hopefully I can progress further on Friday. Until then, take care and I will report in soon. Goodbye!

Author: 57r3l574d

I am currently a Graduate Student at the University of Central Florida and simultaneously employed by the university library's Special Collections and University Archives as a Other Personnel Service (OPS) Student. Expected to graduate in 2019 with a History MA - Public History Track.

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