The Active Collections group is developing a new model to streamline the deaccessioning process, but they need information about current practices at house museums and historic sites to figure out how to best go about this. If you’d like to share what’s happening at your institution as well as your thoughts on the process and impact of decessioning, please take their online survey. This is part of a field-wide survey, so we really want to be sure historic sites and house museums are well represented. To learn more, visit ActiveCollections.org.
During a recent visit to the Abbe Museum in Bar Harbor, Maine, I spotted a clever way that allows them to easily remodel their lobby from a visitor reception area to an event space. You don’t notice it at first because the furniture is so well designed and complements the appearance of the building. The reception desk is busy selling tickets and greeting visitors, and next to it are panels explaining what to see and do. But look below or behind, and you discover it’s not a panel but a moveable storage wall. Clever!
This past Saturday, the Council (aka board) of the American Association for State and Local History met in Maine for one of their three regular meetings each year. It’s been a tough few months due to the discovery of embezzlement and fraud within the organization, so this meeting had been preceded by nearly a dozen additional meetings of the Council and several committees by conference call to deal with various aspects related to the situation, potential threats to the organization, and improvements to our current financial management by reviewing and revising various policies, procedures, and practices. This meeting adopted revised financial policies and procedures; adopted revised codes of ethics for board, staff, and organization; adopted a revised conflict of interest policy for board and staff; and discussed how the by-laws may need to revise the finance and audit committee responsibilities as well reconsider how Council members are elected to ensure we have sufficient people on board with financial skills. We also began working more strategically, looking longterm to identify priorities so we can preserve those programs that matter most to members and most effectively fulfill the mission. History News and the annual meeting/conference rose to the top as expected, but Continue reading