The relationship between me and the George L. Stuart, Jr. Collection can be summed to a quote from Michael Corleone (performed by Al Pacino) in The Godfather: Part III: “Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in!” I thought after sleeving some loose volunteer cards I would be able to triumphantly report to Mr. Ogreten that the processing of the collection was completed. Unbeknownst to me, Mr. Ogreten had some “sloppy seconds” to be added to the collection in return. A fitting conclusion to this archival phase and the week. Still, not all of today’s events are bemoaned.
As previously mentioned, the first intentions in my mind as I walked through the office was to sleeve the loose volunteer registration cards I discovered in Box 47. After retrieving the folder from Box 47 as well the package of insert sleeve pages that had pockets of the right proportions, I began that monotonous task. I completed my secondary objective in less than in hour and felt satisfied once I was certain the collection was completed.
I also set aside the folder that contained the “David Benjamin” business card I found yesterday. Mr. Benjamin was very busy and was not in the office much of the morning. When he eventually did have some free time, I displayed the card to him and he jokingly remarked that he “had been around a long time” and did not know his computer skills were “that good” (the other “David Benjamin” worked with computers, apparently).
With the boxes returned to shelves, I announced to Mr. Ogreten that the processing was done. Mr. Ogreten was excited at the news, but I reminded him about the VHS cases and the two boxes of index cards that need better housing. While the former was presently in transit, the latter had to be reiterated for Mr. Ogreten. I led him to the boxes in question and he examined them. Unfortunately, there were no archival boxes in storage that could better house the cards.
Mr. Ogreten found a box used by our library assistant, Rebecca Hammond, for the office that had the right dimensions. This box could not be used in the archives because the metal inside would eventually rust. Mr. Ogreten measured the dimensions and searched online for an archival box equivalent. Later, he presented to me his findings and one was en route to be tested if it could hold the cards.
In the meantime, Mr. Ogreten dashed any ambitions of beginning the finding aid today by giving me a handful of documents that had previously extracted from the collection for closer investigation. Of course, my task was to reintegrate the documents into the collection. Fortunately, the destinations of the majority of these “sloppy seconds” was quickly solved. Only two baffled me at the end of my shift.
I checked the time only to realize my shift was nearly over. I resigned the task of reintegrating the final two documents to be completed on next Monday. Before leaving, I said farewell to the staff and wished them a fond weekend.
In review, loose cards were sleeved, a box was measured and an archival equivalent was ordered, and some “sloppy second” documents were reintegrated. Next week, the latter will be finished and I will finally begin building the finding aid. Until then, enjoy the weekend and stay safe! Bye!