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E-BULLETIN No. 63 – 31 March 2010


Hon Editor, Dr Ruth S. Kerr


1)  Canadian experience re national archives


2)  New Secretariat for Blue Shield Australia


3)  About Blue Shield


4)  The impact of technology on the creative process and digital preservation


5)  2010 Community Heritage Grants now open


6)  Consider joining the online Australian Historical Societies Support Group



1)  Canadian experience re national archives


The following link will be of interest to all historians concerned about recent Australian events, such as the proposed closure of the National Archives of Australia offices in Adelaide, Hobart and Darwin.


(Source: – 15 March 2010)




2)  New Secretariat for Blue Shield Australia


The Collections Council of Australia has handed over its role as the Secretariat of Blue Shield Australia to the Australian Library and Information Association.


It was announced at: “Eighteenth Announcement” at .


The new contact details for Blue Shield Australia are as follows:


Telephone:   1300 313 443




(Source:  - 18 March 2010)


3)  About Blue Shield


Blue Shield is the cultural equivalent of Red Cross, and works to protect the world’s cultural heritage threatened by wars and natural disasters.


Blue Shield Australia is recognised by the International Committee of the Blue Shield as its Australian national committee. The committee is a federation of the Australian representatives of four of the pillar bodies of the International Committee of the Blue Shield (i.e. the International Council on Archives, the International Council of Museums, the International Council on Monuments and Sites, and the International Federation of Library Associations


Detlev Lueth, chair of Blue Shield Australia, said: “We are urging all cultural organisations across Australia to get involved during the month of May by taking at least one step to prepare for response to a disaster.


“Last year’s bushfires in Victoria and floods in Queensland are extreme cases – but they are also a strong wake-up call about the importance of disaster preparedness.  The more likely risks for much of Australia’s cultural heritage are faulty electrical wiring starting a fire or the impact of burst water pipes in storage areas.”


“Being prepared to respond takes time and thought in advance. Too often, we devote our attention to tasks with more immediate payback.  Not enough of Australia’s cultural organisations have disaster plans and for those that do, the plan may be out of date.”


“MayDay is a simple but effective campaign designed to encourage organisations to get to know their local fire-fighters and police in a bid to get pointers on safety and preparedness, to take time out to eliminate hazards such as blocked fire exits, improper storage of paints and solvents, or to become familiar with the institution’s disaster plan.”


(Source: Blue Shield Australia Press Release – 16 March 2010)



4)  The impact of technology on the creative process and digital preservation


The New York Times article “Fending Off Digital Decay, Bit by Bit,” contains significant information on preservation and access issues for future archives.


(Source: – 18 March 2010)



5)  2010 Community Heritage Grants now open

The National Library of Australia is calling for applications for the 2010 Community Heritage Grants.

The grants of up to $15 000 are available to community groups around the country to help preserve and manage locally held, nationally significant cultural heritage collections of documents and objects for future generations.

Projects supported include significance assessments; preservation needs assessments, conservation activities and collection management.

Applications for grants for collection management training workshops for staff and volunteers from community organisations to improve their skills when working with heritage collections are also welcome.

Representatives from historical societies, museums, public libraries, archives and Indigenous and migrant community groups are encouraged to apply.

Applications close on Friday 14 May 2010.

Since 1994, a combined total of over $3 million in funding has been provided to 736 projects.

The 2010 Community Heritage Grants Program is funded by the Australian Government through the National Library of Australia; the Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts; the National Archives of Australia; the National Film and Sound Archive; and the National Museum of Australia.

Information, guidelines and application forms are available at

(Source: ICOMOS Email News No. 426 – 12 March 2010)


6)  Consider joining the online Australian Historical Societies Support Group


The online Australian Historical Societies Support Group, through an arrangement between the Federation of Australian Historical Societies (FAHS) and the Royal Historical Society of Victoria, is one of the My Connected Community (mc2) groups initiated and funded by the Victorian Government’s Connecting Communities policy. 


The Australian Historical Societies Support Group offers participating historical societies, like-minded bodies and their members a variety of free, easy to use Web-based services which they can use to communicate with each other across the nation and the world on any topic that is of interest or concern to their organisations.  


The mc2 website provides easy access to online technologies now available for communicating between group members. Features of mc2 include a forum, an events list, space for sharing files, space for sharing photos, a links page and a chat room.


Details on how to join the Group are available at the FAHS website at:  Follow the “Support” and “Support Group” links from the home page.


(Source: FAHS Council)