Archiving the past
McCreary County Clerk Eric Haynes’ office is taking another step toward modernization with the addition of digital record keeping and archiving through a grant award.
The grant, received through the Kentucky Department of Library and Archives, provided new computer and scanning equipment to help preserve the vast collection of historical records kept in the office.
Haynes said the grant will allow his office to digitally scan all records, such as deeds, land transfers and marriage licenses, for up to the past 30 years, and store them online for easier access.
Not only will the online storage make it easier for citizens to search through the data, it will also preserve the large volumes of records kept by the office. Prior to the digitizing, citizens requesting to look at old records would have to enter the office and search through the volumes of books kept in storage – removing the page and copying it if they needed a record. That wear and tear threatened to damage or even destroy the records.
County agencies, such as the PVA Office and County Attorney will have access to the database, making the research they may need in their duties simpler as well.
Now, citizens will be able to search online for the records, for a small fee, preserving the original copies for history.
The grant will also pay the salary of one dedicated staff member to scan all records into the database.