Historic records need to come back
Letter Updated on Oct. 23
All historic records housed at the Yuma Historical Society were recently transported to Phoenix.
The state says our facilities lack the proper components to be archival safely. The records will be digitized, repaired, restored as needed, then sent back to Yuma when/if we have a proper facility.
True, it will be nice to have all our records digitized. They say these will then be put online so that the records are accessible to all. That’s good. But will all the records be available, or just a select few? What will happen to all the objects that have been donated by Yumans for many years?
Many people travel many miles to Yuma to research our records. They come without an appointment thinking the records will be available, only to find they will have to drive another three hours to Phoenix to view them if they are available there.
The return time is set to be 18 months to two years. This sounds reasonable since we have been asking for help for several years. But now, with little warning they have taken the entire collection. Where will the funds come from to undertake this entire project? A grant? If so, is the money in hand? What documents are in place to assure that everything that goes to Phoenix will come back to Yuma?
As someone who cares a great deal about Yuma and its history, let’s make sure we will be able to view our records here in Yuma.