June 12, 2012

Green paper

Filed under: the process of archival processing — susanwoodland @ 3:28 pm

Remember White Out?  I just checked and we have one bottle of Bic “Wite-Out” correction fluid in our supply closet.  Sometime after the era of carbon copies, after office copy machines became ubiquitous but before computers overtook typewriters – c1970s-1980s … I like to think of this time as the golden age of white out.

Correct a mistake with white out, re-insert page in typewriter and type correctly.  White out was good also for handwritten notes, for cleaning up random marks before photocopying a document, and for personalizing birthday cards.

What to do, however, if you use paper in a color other than white?  The answer was, obviously, white out in colors.

Green white out nearly matches green paper

In addition to the fact that the memo above is on green paper, it is interesting also for the content, and for clues to the office culture of the time.  Written in 1979 by Irving Brodsky, who served as Executive Vice-President of the Associated YM-YWHA’s from 1957 to 1981.  For more information on Irving Brodsky, please take a look at his oral history, which can be found here:  Brodsky Oral History.  Note that the memo includes the letterhead for the Associated YM-YMHA’s of Greater New York, located at Federation’s offices on 59th Street.

The addressee is Dr. Don Feldstein, who was the Executive Director for Federation’s Community Services division beginning in 1976.  Presumably it was Dr. Feldstein who wrote the note to Executive Vice-President Sanford Solender to the left of the date, “SS: We left it that you would see him.”  And note the message in the upper lefthand corner from Sanford Solender to his secretary, Addie, to see if she could secure a copy of the Judge Benjamin letter.

On our wish list: examples of pink, blue and yellow white out.

June 8, 2012

UJA-Federation of New York Oral History transcript digitization complete

Filed under: audio-visual material — thiscangobacktothearchives @ 10:46 am
Back from the digital lab, empty file folders

Back from the digital lab, these folders were emptied and the transcripts that were temporarily placed in these folders have been returned back to their respective location with other archival material found in the Oral History Project work files (Series I, Subseries B).

This week, an important milestone in the completion of the digitization of the UJA-Federation Oral History Project was reached. The complete run of available transcripts for the oral histories, from Nathan S. Ancell to Bella Zelkin, have been digitally scanned, run through optical character recognition software, and turned into portable document format (PDF) files. The transcripts have been digitized to accompany the digitized audio files of the oral histories and, in some cases, are the only available version of interviews. Once the transcripts are available online through the Center for Jewish History Digital Collections, all of the transcripts will be fully searchable, which will make the resource even more accessible and valuable to future researchers and users.

Special thanks goes to Gruss Lipper Digital Laboratory at the Center for Jewish History for digitizing the transcripts. Work continues to be done on creating digital surrogates of the many audio cassettes associated with the Oral History Project. We expect that aspect of the digitization project to be complete by the end of the summer.

We are tremendously proud to have the letters A (Ancell, Nathan S.) through H (Hollander, Anna) complete with audio files and transcripts available online via our finding aid for this part of the collection and at Soon (as in over this weekend), the letter H will be completed and the letters I and J will be ingested and made available online as well.

June 1, 2012

Jerome Saltz Budget Files (1917-1970)

We’ve now finished processing many of the financial files from 1917 through 1970.  A large group of these boxes were under the control of Jerome Saltz, in Federation’s finance department.  Saltz inherited Federation’s earliest budget files from his predecessors, which is why the dates of these files include many from before he was employed at Federation.  Below is information about these files, which will become part of the finding aid for the Federation of Jewish Philanthropies (FJP) subgroup.

Jerome L. Saltz was the Budget Director for the Federation of Jewish Philanthropies (FJP) during the 1940s through the end of the 1960s. He was also a department head of FJP’s Office of Management and Budget.

The records contain Saltz’s collected budget material from 1917 to 1920 (7 bankers boxes), 1939 (1 bankers box) and material from his tenure from 1954 to 1968 (46 bankers boxes). As a whole, these material belong to the FJP/Administration/Finance and Budget subseries.  The budget material received in our second shipment is from 1956 to 1968 (37 bankers boxes). The material was received in boxes that were very dirty and dusty, with crushed and missing lids, and most folders held the paper with Acco metallic 2-prong fasteners. Nearly all of the folders were in brittle or worn condition and so we then rehoused the contents within these folders in acid-free folders. Two boxes had become wet at some point in the distant past and were found to contain inactive mold.  The papers showing signs of this inactive mold were preservation-photocopied onto acid-free paper and the original paper was discarded.  As with all of the files we have processed to date, an Excel folder inventory was created.

The budget material mainly consists of annual agencies files. The files from 1954 to 1968 were arranged by budget year, using the scheme listed below, outlined with Roman numerals. This outline evolved over FJP’s existence, with this being the most recent version.  Included in parentheses are examples of agencies that belonged to the particular category.  In each folder, a budget worksheet contains the name of the category that the folder belongs to, which was helpful in processing this part of the collection. Furthermore, in our inventory and on the folder title itself, we retained the categories that each agency belonged to, as a convenient and logical way to group the dozens of agencies funded by FJP each year.

I. Child Care (i.e., Jewish Board of Guardians, Louise Wise Services)

II. Care of Aged (i.e., Home for Aged and Infirm Hebrews, Jewish Home and Hospital for Aged)

III. Medical Care (i.e., Blythedale Children’s Hospital, Hospital for Joint Diseases)

IV. Family Education & Vocational (i.e., Altro Health & Rehabilitation Services, Jewish Family Service)

V. Religious Education (i.e., Jewish Education Committee)

VI. Community Centers (i.e., Educational Alliance, Y.M. & Y.M.H.A. – 92nd Street)

VII. Camps (i.e., Camp Rainbow, Surprise Lake Camp)

VIII. Subventions (i.e., Central Bureau for the Jewish Aged, New York Board of Rabbis)

Budgeting forced the agencies to develop a deep understanding of where and how their money was being spent.  The budget material is rich with financial information such as itemized yearly expenditures as well as correspondence that provides evidence as to how these agencies operated during a particular fiscal year.  The correspondence includes letters between Jerome Saltz and budget committee chairs of the particular agencies as well as occasional correspondence between Maurice Hexter (FJP Executive Vice-President) and the Executive Directors of these agencies.

Series VIII is composed of agencies who received “subventions” rather than regular Federation “allocations”. A subvention was given to an agency that was not an official agency of Federation, but which nonetheless received financial support from Federation.  In these files, the first folder in the subventions category contains correspondence with numerous agencies in the New York City area (i.e., National Council of Jewish Women – Brooklyn Section, Community Council of Greater New York), for which the surviving record is minimal.  The major agencies that were subvented by the Federation of Jewish Philanthropies had their own folders and include the Association of Jewish Sponsored Camps, the Central Bureau for the Jewish Aged, the New York Board of Rabbis, the New York Jewish Child Care Council, and the Vocational Advisory Service. The subvention files will be of particular interest to researchers because they contain information about agencies other than the official Federation agencies.

Below is a photo of a box with brittle folders prior to being processed and following is a photo of a box after it has been processed.

Annual Agency Files, 1919

Annual Agency Files, 1917, after processing

And here’s a picture of the Acco binding clip that was used to hold the papers together in the folders:

Acco binding clip

The following image is a budget summary of the Y.M.-Y.W.H.A. of 92nd Street from 1967 to 1968.

YM-YWHA Budget Sheet

Budget worksheet for the YM-YWHA of 92nd St., 1967-1968

Also included in Jerome Saltz’s files from our second shipment are agency financial reports which constitute 5 bankers boxes and are different from those found in the agency budget files.  The majority of these files dates from 1961 to 1969 and is unaudited financial reports.

We look forward to telling you more about the budget files as more of the material are processed.

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