JLAB History Archives Project
The beginning: During the early months of 2012, the JLAB History Task Force was brought to life primarily by concerns of Larry Cardman, a long-time physicist at the lab who was concerned about the potential loss of significant records as other scientists, like himself, retired and left the area.
The first task force meeting took place on Thursday, March 1, 2012, and included the following individuals:
- Volker Burkert, Hall B Leader
- David Richards, Theory Group
- Douglas Higinbotham, Hall A
- Michelle Shinn, Free Electron Laser
- Dean Golembeski, Public Affairs Officer
- Steve Corneliussen, Accelerator Division
- Leigh Harwood, 12 GeV Project
- Will Oren, Engineering Division
- Kim Kindrew, Records Manager
- Larry Cardman, Physics Division
On February 28, 2012, Larry Cardman sent a powerpoint presentation to the task force, which he originally gave at Mont's request to the Lab Leadership Meeting on February 17, 2012. Larry's request to the task force was that we "come to the meeting prepared to discuss the broad plans as outlined and to make suggestions for your thoughts on our initial focus."
A historian: Catherine Westfall was contracted by Jefferson Lab to, among other relevant responsibilities, write an article on the history of the JLab Central Helium Liquifier (CHL), including its conceptual design, the realization of that design, operations of the CHL and the sustained effort to enhance its reliability, and advances in helium liquefier technology that resulted from the sum of that effort.
Westfall is a visiting associate professor at Lyman Briggs College at Michigan State University, and author of Fermilab: Physics, the Frontier,and Megascience, ISBN-13:978-0226346256, University of Chicago Press, 2008; and Critical Assembly: A Technical History of Los Alamos during the Oppenheimer Years, ISBN-13: 978-0521541176, Cambridge University Press, 1993. Westfall also wrote papers regarding the history of Jefferson Lab:
- DOE's Jefferson Lab: What's in a name? Physics Today 50, 11 1997
- Jefferson Lab's 1985 Switch to Superconducting Accelerator Technology. Hist. rep., Jefferson Lab archive
- The Founding of CEBAF, 1979 to 1987. Hist. rep., Jefferson Lab archive
- The Prehistory of Jefferson Lab's SRF Accelerating Cavities, 1962 to 1985. Hist. rep., Jefferson Lab archive
Fermilab visit: On August 14, 2012, Kim Kindrew, CRM, the Jefferson Lab Records Manager, visited with the Fermilab History and Archives Project and library staff, and received sound advice on how to proceed with the JLAB History Archives. As recorded in her post-visit presentation to the JLAB History Task force, Fermilab made the following suggestions:
- Evaluate sources of material for potential collections
- Find and apply for grants to assist with collection development
- Develop policies
- Assign experts to establish provenance
- Create controlled access terms for cataloging
- Create consent forms for all oral interviews
- Participate in Society of American Archivists activities
Additionally, Fermilab staff recommended "baby-steps" to evaluation collection material:
- Appraise the functions. Directorate-level functions of the lab will have potentially greater archival volume than lower levels.
- Records unique and specific to JLAB. Fermilab retains unique records of the buffalo activity
- Identify important projects. CHL, FEL, SRF, PAC, etc.
Proposal to leadership: Larry Cardman, Kandice Carter, Dean Golembeski and Kim Kindrew worked together to develop a Proposal to establish Jefferson Lab Archives. The proposal includes options for vendor quotes for shelving of paper items, FTE staff necessary to accomplish some level of forward progress, and other factors. The last version of the proposal, after numerous renditions, is from May, 2013.
A starting point: A number of boxes of paper were collected from the Director's Office during the leadership of Hermann Grunder. Additional boxes were collected from Steve Corneliussen prior to his retirement. An inventory of these boxes are recorded in a spreadsheet.
John Schiffer, formerly the Director of the Physics Division at Argonne National Laboratory, provided Jefferson Lab with a number of records from his files, including 1989 CEBAF Program Advisory Committee (PAC) Meeting Materials, DOE/NSF Committee Meeting Transcripts dated 1981-1983. Jefferson Lab's Copy Center scanned these records, and they are currently stored in a Document Management System.
Next Steps ... 2013-2014.