The Field Experience During The William R. Oliver Special Library Essay

The Field Experience During The William R. Oliver Special Library Essay

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The field experience took place in the William R. Oliver Special Collections department at Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Oakland location under the archivist, Greg Priore. The field experience primarily focused on learning about proper conduction of the department with the public, creating and analyzing finding aids with archives, as well as other things of note as they appeared. The time period of the field experience took place from September to November resulting in ten hours total. Due to the incomplete collection processing and finding aid creation, volunteer work is still being performed following the completion of the field experience requirement.
The first visit of the Oliver Special Collections room warranted an overview of the department, which is split into a rare book collection and the archival collection. Due to the room being a part of a public library, the general public are the strongest group of users, while staff, students, and professors at local universities make up the remaining users of the facility. In addition to the room, Greg Priore also stored archival materials and collections in a storage space located on the second floor of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, East Liberty branch. As a current employee of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, the Special Collections was familiar from past visits and did not require a full tour of the public library, which is typically standard for new volunteers.
The primary focus of the field experience was discussed, including opportunities to observe and to take on additional tasks. The first visit concentrated on an upcoming event for the library called After Hours – Books First, where Greg presents the Oliver room and its collection to visitors with a focus on...


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...he collection contained and the meaning behind the kept materials. The collection spans from 2008 to 2014 and it covers all eighteen branches along with substitute pool services, volunteer services, LYNCS (Libraries in Your Neighborhood, Community, and School), and a Virtual branch. During the review process, the weeding of materials were made according to archivist’s requests; the reasoning for weeding included more than two copies of the same document, items containing personally identifying information, and materials clearly out of place in the collection. Furthermore, all documents were filed in archival boxes from back to front to maintain consistency with other archives. As a current employee of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, the contents of the collection provide a lot of insight about the ongoing in the branches and interesting events that have occurred.

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