Hosted by the City of Manchester

Archive Open Days

11 September 2014 by Sylvia Kölling

LGBT History Month, in conjunction with Archives+, is proud to offer a unique opportunity to develop and improve your archive skills.

  • Are you interested in researching LGBT History and don't know where to start?
  • Have you done a history project before but are unsure about where to look for material for something new?
  • Are you curious about all the different records in the LGBT Source Guide but don't know how to turn this into a presentation?

If so, we have the perfect opportunity for you: three unique opportunities to come to the Archive Search Room and gain useful skills and learn from trained archivists and historians.

The only requirement for attendance is the desire to make a film, a piece of artwork, or research a presentation/project.

What should you expect?

Our trained volunteers will show you how to search the Archive catalogue, how to handle records and artefacts and will have some examples of special LGBT collections available to browse and take inspiration from.

We will then talk about interpreting archive records so that they make sense in their own context and guide you through the process of doing this yourself in more detail.

An example of this process is the interpretation of, say, a programme for Queer Up North Jan-March 1992 (GB127.M825/QUN/1/1). Useful questions would be: what was the situation in Manchester at the time? What was the political/economic climate? Did this kind of thing happen often? Who are the key players in this event? Were there any results or consequences after the event happened?

Just in case you feel like you want some guidance on how to do all this, here are the dates for our Archives Open Days:

  • Thursday 16th October 6-8pm: Introduction to archival research and special collections. Come to us with your ideas and we will help you make it into a talk/presentation/film/artwork! Also, this is our special event for film-makers but not exclusively.
  • Saturday 22nd November 2-4pm: Still not got an idea but want to participate? Come along and find out what is possible to learn from records that are not specifically LGBT but could be interpreted this way.
  • Tuesday 13th January 11am-1pm: Last chance before the big event! Come along and polish off your presentation, ask any final questions and get useful feedback from our trained archivists and historians.

All these open days will start in the Search Room at Archives+ in Manchester's Central Library and we will look over the records there and then go to a meeting room to talk more about how to turn archival material into History.

If you can't make it to the archive events, or have any other questions, we are happy to give advice by email or answer questions on the phone. Please get in touch via our contact page.

Sylvia Kölling

Festival volunteer and Saturday Hub organiser.

© 2014 LGBT History Festival

Part of Schools OUT UK, Registered Charity #1156352 in England and Wales.

Uncovering & celebrating our past to enlighten our present & thereby guiding our creation of a more inclusive & equitable future.

LGBT History Festival website created with love by Kim Foale and Squid.