December 6, 2018
If I had to pick one word to describe the summer and fall at the GBL it would be FIRST. Librarian Kelsey Grimm and Collections Manager, Jennifer St. Germain officially joined our staff in July, growing our professional staff for the first time by two! We installed a new exhibit in our main gallery, a first for the present staff. In partnership with IU Themester 2018, Animal-Spirit-Human, opened in October, followed by two related programming events in early November. We are excited about the exhibit and the improvements it brought to the Mentoria Headdy Hall.
In early fall we learned that the Save America’s Treasures grant proposal we submitted over the winter was selected for funding. Curating Angel Mounds Legacy Collection was one of only seven Museum Collection grants awarded by the NPS through an interagency agreement with the IMLS. This is an important first for GBL, and Angel Mounds. For the FIRST time since arriving on the IU campus in the late 1960s, the grant will allow the Angel Mounds legacy collection, (1939-1983), to be organized and housed in archival-quality containers. Rehousing the collection is a first step in its eventual transfer to the new ALF 3 collections facility on the IUB campus. The Curating Angel project will also organize the associated excavation records, create a complete digitized catalogue of the 1939-1983 images, reorganize the research collections, and no doubt spawn many new collections-based research projects. We are excited to embark on this important FIRST!
In addition to these important firsts, we were also busy hosting researchers including some familiar to the GBL, former Curator of Collections, Dru McGill, and other Southeastern and Midwestern archaeologists David Dye, Paul Welch, Cheryl Munson, Ed Herrmann, and Cheryl Claassen. These researchers took an interest in the whole pot collection, state site files, Angel Mounds and other late pre-contact collections, and materials analysis laboratory. We also provided images from the 1974 Prairie Creek Field School to the Daviess County Museum, for a new exhibit and we are currently collaborating with the Indiana Historical Society on the You Are There 1939: Exploring Angel Mounds exhibit, planned for a spring 2019 opening. It is exciting to see all of this interest in GBL collections and facilities!
Melody Pope, Curator