ARCHIVIST OF THE HALL OF RECORDS 3
LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL
December 23, 1958
To THE HONORABLE
THE HALL OF RECORDS COMMISSION
As we began fiscal year 1959, preparations had been completed for our
move into the Record Center of the new State Office Building in Annapolis
and firm predictions had been made that another Record Center in the new
office building in Baltimore would be ready before the end of the fiscal year.
The administration of two new establishments of this kind outside our build-
ing means that we are now entering an expanding field of activity and one
which soon will take half our staff and half our budget. Consequently, Mr.
Beach, the Assistant Records Administrator, and I thought that this would
be a good time to summarize the first five years of our work in records man-
agement. I would call your especial attention, therefore, to the section of this
report entitled "Records Management" where you will find such a summary.
Some of our activities this year prospered. We are gratified at the pro-
gress being made in microfilming county land records and in the accession of
local church records. We are pleased, too, that in spite of the marked increase
in the use of our records, we were able to continue our publication program
(this was especially difficult for a year in which a new Maryland Manual had
to appear). We were not so fortunate in other areas. We added very little to
our collection of public documents, which ought to be completed as soon as
possible, and we were not able to reduce the excessive cost of binding here
at the Hall of Records. In previous reports I have pointed out that it would
not be wise to continue binding, in spite of its obvious advantages, unless
the cost could be reduced to approximately that of commercial binders. In
this we have failed. We must now seriously consider abandoning the program.
I must report, too, that our finding aids were hardly increased this year be-
cause the very large gain in circulation here and in correspondence absorbed
the time of those members of the staff who in the past would have devoted
part-time to this facet of our work. Consequently, we have asked for an ad-
ditional Junior Archivist for fiscal year 1960. If granted, this will be the first
increase in the archival staff in more than ten years.
As you are aware, we were not able to complete arrangements for the
publication of the Maryland Guide. Following the meeting of the Commission