Thanks to grant funds from the Santa Clara Historic Home Tour and generous donations from the Santa Clara City Library Foundation and Friends, a project with Backstage Library Works is now underway to microfilm and digitize eighteen Santa Clara Chamber of Commerce Scrapbooks covering the years 1937– 1961. Brittle and unimpressive in appearance, these scrapbooks are nevertheless a treasure trove of information about how and why a small rural town like Santa Clara with under 6,500 people in 1937 grew tenfold in population in less than 25 years.
Backstage Library Works will microfilm these fragile scrapbooks to assure their long-term archival preservation and then will digitize the microfilm to provide more options for distribution and accessibility. When the microfilm and digitized records are received, the table of content indexes will be put online on the Library’s Local History web page (http://bit.ly/b0x- VWe) for all to see. Based on the number of research questions answered using the scrapbooks, Local History Librarian Mary Hanel believes historians, journalists, students, and city planners of the future will be delighted that the story told by these scrap- books is being preserved and made more accessible.