On August 10, the IHRC formally received the Philip M. Hamer and Elizabeth Hamer Kegan Award from the Society of American Archivists at its annual meeting held in San Diego, California this year.
The award was given to the Center for its Digitizing Immigrant Project, "in recognition of successful efforts to increase public awareness through the use of archival and manuscript materials." Research Archivist Daniel Necas participated in the annual meeting, including a pre-conference professional development workshop in addition to a number of conference sessions. He also attended the awards ceremony on behalf of the IHRC.
In her letter informing the IHRC of the decision, Lisa Conathan, Chair of the Award Subcommittee, praised the IHRC for "its outstanding efforts in promoting the knowledge and use of documentation of the immigrant experience through the Digitizing Immigrant Letters Project. Established in 1973, this award recognizes an archivist, editor, group of individuals or institution that has increased public awareness of archival documents for educational, instructional or other purposes.
The award committee expresses its high regard for the team's efforts to promote access to immigrant letters through an inviting and useful web site. We particularly recognize the stellar presentation of transcriptions and translations of letters in several languages, which makes the multilingual material accessible both in the original language and in English. The web access, together with the project's sponsorship of scholars, public talks and exhibits, increase public awareness of American immigrant history for scholars, family historians, and the general public." (Letter from the Award Subcommittee Chair, Lisa Conathan, April 30, 2012)