I was scheduled to travel in December with one of our Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College doctoral students to the University of Maryland special collections (archive) to study some of the history of educational broadcasting. It’s part of a new project we have.
Five days before we left, one of the archivists sent me a finding aid — a descriptive index of a collection they had, that wasn’t yet online. The finding aid was 200 pages long, describing a collection of 450 linear feet — that means 450 shelving feet, or more than 200 office-style boxes of material.
The archive was for the Children’s Television Workshop, now called Sesame Workshop, which has produced the children’s television show Sesame Street since November 10, 1969, and is also known for The Electric Company and 3-2-1 Contact.
The first piece from this work is now online at the Arizona Republic, about the day Barry Goldwater held the fate of Sesame Street in his hands. It’s a little shorter than the original version, but I had to follow up on the Arizona connection. Goldwater’s papers are here at Arizona State, but not easily accessible as the main Tempe library is currently under reconstruction. So.. more to come.