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The collection comprises archival artifacts such as postcards, photographs, cemetery records, scrapbooks, periodicals, maps, reports, audiovisuals (including sound recordings and books by Ruth Sargent), and Peaks Island printed material spanning from the early 20th century- up to the present. More than 4,500 scans were made.
Above: An original photograph of Forest City Landing.
Below: Some examples of Peaks Island postcards.
Processing (arrangement, description, archival rehousing), digital scanning, and web uploading was accomplished between October 2017 and January 2018, in the PPL’s Portland Room, by a production team consisting of Portland Room staff and Peaks Island volunteers. We are grateful for the supporting generosity of the Peaks Island Fund and the Casco Bay Islands Alliance in making this project possible.
Nancy, Monica, and Abraham- processing the Peaks Island collection, and building the electronic Finding Aid, in the Portland Room.
Cindy, Eric, and Sarah- digitizing the Peaks Island scrapbooks, using a special Zeutschel book scanner at the Main Library.
PPL archivist Abraham scanning, encoding, and uploading back issues of “Nor’ by East” to PPL’s Peaks Island Archives Digital Commons page.
The original archival material, now preserved and digitized, will return to the Peaks Island Branch Library, later this year. Happy Browsing!
All the archival materials are processed and rehoused in preservation enclosures, as well as digitized.
During Portland Public Library’s first annual maker fair in 2015, Catherine Fisher, personal historian, asked attendees of the fair and fellow exhibitors to sit for a brief, recorded audio interview about making. Fourteen participants sat down in the gloriously noisy and jam-packed auditorium to talk about what they make, and why and how and where. These interviews are now available on PPL’s Digital Commons. Have a listen here as painters, poets, podcasters, and others engage in discussions about making.
And mark your calendars for PPL’s next maker fair — Saturday, April 28, 10:00am – 2:00pm.
Portland’s esteemed and much-loved Fire Department celebrates its 250th anniversary this month. The City of Portland will recognize two-and-a-half centuries of the Fire Department’s service, with a special proclamation and observance at the Portland Fire Museum, on March 29th. Joining this extraordinary commemoration, the Library’s Portland Room is now exhibiting artifacts and photographs that attest to the brilliant history of the Portland Fire Department.
Above: Apr 1947 – Portland Fire Department fireman on a ladder truck; Second Parish Presbyterian Church (371 Congress Street) in background.
Below: January 1952 – Fire, at James Fruit Company, 225 Commercial Street.
Below: Portland Fire Department locations, in order: Central Fire Station, Congress Street, Woodfords Corner, and Peaks Island:
Below: Views from the Portland Room archival exhibit:
Additional artifacts, such as a leather bucket, an antique Portland fire helmet, and a hose nozzle from an East Deering firehouse, have been lent by the Portland Fire Museum for the exhibit. Below: Another ladder rescue, this time by Fireman Joseph R. Miller, on October 19, 1955.
Come on up and check out the exhibit! The Portland Room is open Mondays-Thursdays, 10am-7pm; Fridays, 10am-6pm.
___________________________ Archivist’s postscriptum:
During the processing (arrangement, description, and archival rehousing) of our large collection of photographic still film, I discovered a negative which had unusual crayon lines drawn across both sides:
A series of immersion baths in distilled water and Photo-Flo 200 wetting agent loosened the crayon marks from both the emulsion and acetate-base sides of the film, allowing me to completely remove the marks with cotton swabs:
The scanned image reveals the scene of a fire at Portland’s City Hospital (today, it’s known as the Barron Center), 1151 Brighton Avenue, on August 11, 1962, and now the visual information is preserved.