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Audio-Visual Materials

Many of the manuscript collections Western History and Genealogy has received over the years from donors contain audio-visual materials. There are dozens of formats in which these materials have come to us and we don't have the proper equipment on which to play all of them. But even if we have the proper equipment, we are not always willing to allow them to be played because of the risk associated with playing original materials.

Some of the tapes or films have become brittle over the years and playing them is a risk. In many cases, we are willing to play them only to make a digital copy of them at the same time. There is a charge for this digitization based on the length of the material and the type of material being digitized. Some of the materials must be sent out to a vendor to be digitized and the customer is responsible for paying the vendor directly for those costs. Included in those fees must be a digital copy of the material for the library. This will allow us to preserve the materials for future researchers.

In some cases, there is a transcript of the interview or oral history so one need not listen to the tape itself in order to determine the content. There are also some materials that have a guide to the contents, if not a complete inventory.