Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Your pictures are needed

Old Family Photos Sought For Centennial Celebration

Haul out the family picture album. Explore the local newspaper's photo archives, or check that old box of negatives you've been meaning to organize. You may discover an image that's destined to be part of Oklahoma's centennial celebration.

Individuals and organizations throughout the state are encouraged to submit photos to "Oklahoma Image," a set of traveling exhibits that will celebrate Oklahoma's 100th birthday in 2007.

The Oklahoma Department of Libraries (ODL) is sponsoring four thematic exhibits that will tour the state's public libraries throughout the year. Following the main tour, the exhibits will be available to schools, museums, libraries and community organizations.

Project manager Susan Feller said ODL will consider photo submissions from any era. "We certainly want to see photos from Oklahoma's early days of statehood," Feller said, "but the pre-statehood period and more modern times also need to be represented. We're looking for photos that capture the spirit of our state and its people."

"Oklahoma Image" is modeled after a project ODL sponsored 25 years ago as part of Oklahoma's 75th anniversary celebration. That project featured many historic photographs drawn from private collections. The agency is again asking the public's help in adding new images. "It's our goal to promote the holdings of institutions and individuals through the state," Feller said. "Some of our finest photos may be in private collections, and the Centennial offers an ideal opportunity for us to share these images with each other."

The photographic exhibits will feature four different themes: "Main Street," "The Good Life," "Growing Up in Oklahoma," and "The Land We Belong to is Grand."
The project will include additional resources to help libraries with public programming. A CD-ROM of photographs will also accompany each exhibit. "The compact disk will let us share many more photos than we could with the traditional exhibit alone," Feller said.

To submit a photo for consideration, e-mail a scanned image to sfeller@oltn.odl.state.ok.us, or mail a copy to Susan Feller, Oklahoma Department of Libraries, 200 N.E. 18th Street, Oklahoma City, OK, 73105. Include your contact information, including name, address, phone number, and e-mail address. All submissions will receive a response. Signed photo releases will be required for photos that are accepted for inclusion in the exhbits or CD-ROMS. Appropriate credits will be included with each photograph. All original photos will be returned.

Photos should be e-mailed or post-marked by Sept. 8.

"Oklahoma Image" is made possible by a grant from the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services. Additional partners include the Chambers Library Archive at the University of Central Oklahoma, the Oklahoma Historical Society, the University of Oklahoma Western History Collections, the Oklahoma Humanities Council, the Oklahoma Department of Education, the Oklahoma Museums Association, and The Oklahoman.

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