To begin archives month, I thought it would be helpful to write about what we hold at the Latah County Historical Society (LCHS) archives. LCHS preserves three main types of collections: documents, photographs, and objects. Let’s dive into each category a bit more in-depth.
Documents. This is the category that is traditionally considered ‘Archives.’ Although this category only gets a one-word name, it is incredibly diverse. In this category, LCHS collects the written history of Latah County. This category contains diaries, journals, business records, maps, deeds, menus, church directories, correspondence, and much more. These documents tell the story of Latah County’s residents primarily through their pens. It is incredible to dive through these records to tell the story of Latah County through this lens.
|The Latah County Historical Society Document Archives in the Centennial Annex. Notice the rolling shelving!|
Objects. When you think about going to a museum (like the McConnell Mansion), most likely, you think of the objects on display in a particular exhibition. Objects (three-dimensional material culture) are the most memorable part of the Latah County Historical Society collection. Objects allow us to take the description in a journal and give it a bit of life. Let’s say that we have an excellent history of early logging techniques using crosscut saws. A written historical description will allow people to understand the theory of using a crosscut saw. However, it can be extremely beneficial to have an example of such a saw on display right next to this description. Our object collection is vast and encompasses the basement of our archives facility.
|Object storage in the LCHS collections.|
|Part of the city of Moscow Photograph Collection storage.|
|Photograph collection including communities - Harvard, Halmer, Juliaetta, Kendrick, Onaway are part of Potlatch. These records are currently away being digitized. :)|
In conclusion, we are incredibly proud of our collections that tell the history of Latah County. We work hard to maintain these collections for future generations to learn about the rich history of Latah County, Idaho.
One final reminder to follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter so that you don't miss anything.
Also, keep an eye on our online collections at Google Arts & Culture to see our growing database of online research tools.