In the spirit of American Archives Month, this October we’ve compiled a three-blog series about what archivists do and how we make collections accessible.
Recently, a donor contacted us about a lovely photo album documenting the relief terracotta work of Colorado artist Julius Peter Ambrusch. A descendent of Ambrusch had uncovered the album and felt it could have importance to researchers, so they called us and asked if they could donate it to the library.
- Uniqueness - This item is unique because it represents an art form that may be little understood today (terracotta ceramic work) and from a business that was local in Denver in the 1930s.
- Relevance - The album has added appeal in that it connects to buildings that still exist today.
- Added value to the collection - This item addresses a gap in our collections about artists and decorative arts industries in Colorado.
- Research value - Ambrusch had an interesting personal story. He was born in present-day Slovakia and came to Colorado in 1923. He was a Works Progress Administration (WPA) artist. The library has a related WPA archival collection. He worked for the Denver Terra Cotta Company, and many of his sculptural works still survive.
This blog is part of a series in honor of American Archives Month. Read all three parts to follow the album and learn about other archival work.