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Grant Will Enhance AHC Photo Lab

The Texas State Library and Archives Commission (TSLAC) announced in August it is awarding a $22,934 grant to the Austin History Center for photo digitizing equipment. The AHCA is the fiscal agent for the AHC in administration of the grant. The program is funded by the U. S. Institute of Museum and Library through a grant to TSLAC (2021).

As reported in the Spring 2020 edition of Austin Remembers, the project featured in the AHC grant application calls for identifying, digitizing, and providing broad access to images from the Austin American-Stateman Photographic Morgue collection at the AHC that reflect communities of color in Austin and throughout Texas.

The grant will provide the AHC photo lab with new equipment to more efficiently digitize 35mm film and pay for part-time staff to help identify relevant images. The AHC plans to create two photographic exhibits based on the project in 2021 and to make the digital photos available to the public on its website.

The American-Statesman photo collection consists of hundreds of thousands of photographic negatives from Sept. 1958 to Nov. 1982.

Mary Wadley and Volma Overton, members of the local NAACP chapter, dining out at Lung’s Chinese Kitchen in July 1964. This was part of an exercise by the NAACP to test the new civil rights law, and they were served dinner without incident. This is one of hundreds of photographs from the Austin American-Statesman morgue files at the AHC to be identified, cataloged, and digitized as part of the grant project. Image # AS-64-46180-01, Austin American Statesman Photographic Morgue, Austin History Center, Austin Public Library.


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