We have been busy at the Archive and have added and improved several areas.
Over the years we have accumulated many maps. Over the last year we have completed digitizing all of the collection, now consisting of over 850 maps, the earliest from 1857. Watsonville Blueprint did a great job scanning the larger ones. In order to preserve these fragile maps, we have made 12 X 18 copies and arranged them by: county, city, rancho and bolsa [the old land grants], and Watsonville.
Over the last eight years we have been expanding our oral and video history collection. We recently added one for Harry Wiggins, as well as several Filipino and farming histories from UC Santa Cruz. We now have about 340 histories, and we do make copies for those interested.
Our collections of photograph negatives continue to grow considerably. In addition to the many glass and film negatives from notable area photographers like Edgar L. Clark and Alex Stepick, and numerous old unidentified area negatives, our collection of negatives from the Watsonville Register Pajaronian has expanded to include thousands of images, primarily covering the years 1950–1998.
We have been researching what can be done about flood control and will issue a pamphlet on what the local farmers can do to remove debris from the rivers and tributaries. The California Department of Fish & Game has stymied them in the past and we found that they have procedures that allow the ­removal of debris. There are some issues with how to dispose of the debris. As pointed out in this month’s Board meeting, there are other items that are being dumped in the streams, such as mattresses and appliances.