Irvington High School newspaper, June 1962

I've been cleaning out old memorabilia boxes in anticipation of I-don't-know-what, and scanning any pictures or documents that would be of interest to my descendants about their family history.
Among all the detritus were two issues of The Orator, the student newspaper of Irvington High School, Irvington, NJ, in June, 1962, the year I graduated.  I kept them because I was one of the two editors of the paper.  I'm glad I did, because.....
Our class is about to have its 50th reunion. It appears that at least half of the members of the class of 1962 are mentioned somewhere in the two issues.  There were also several articles on teachers who were about to do this or that, or had done something or other.
One problem is that after scanning (doing the best I could with my desktop scanner and a large paper size) I realized that the PDF files were too big to upload to my website.
Luckily, I had recently been introduced to dropbox.com, which allows me to put big files into a public file for access by....well...by the public.  I hope this works.  I put the two PDF files into my public dropbox folder.
The Orator, June 20, 1962 Issue 7
The Orator, June 20, 1962 Issue 8

(Also, a year or so ago I scanned in a copy of The Torch, our "literary" magazine.  I wrote a post about it then, but I didn't know from Dropbox, and it was a 50mg file.  But, now it's available for FREE thanks to Al Gore and the internet he invented.
The Torch, 1959 

The funny thing about all this is that both issues of the Orator were clearly late. They came out on June 20, and they contained a schedule of final exams that started on June 15.    I wonder if they even were printed before we all left school.  And even funnier (or more tragic), throughout my career as a policy analyst, I was habitually late with reports.  My employers, bless their souls, seemed to accept this weakness.  So, here I am on the other side of 50 years, along with all my similarly disbelieving classmates, and sighing with relief that I got through the work world in one piece, with a roof over my head and food on the table.

Well, enjoy!  And let me know at familyvideogirl@gmail.com  if you have trouble accessing these issues.

Hints for Preserving Old Photographs

My memoir writing teacher, Pat McNees, forwarded a website that reviews the do's and don'ts of archiving and preserving old family photographs.  The website is put out by Florida State University.  In her email, Pat quoted from certain parts of the web page.  I found them useful:


Labeling photographs is very important, to ensure an accurate record.  Identifying people by their names and relationships, and noting the date, place, event, and photographer for each image, will help future generations to understand them.  When labeling, use a soft pencil on the edge of the back of the photograph.  Many inks are not as permanent as pencil, and ball point pens can push through the back, creating bumps in the emulsion.  Another method is to label the enclosure, rather than the photograph.  Label the folder or envelope, or buy album sleeves which have areas for labeling of photographs.
Pressure sensitive tapes such as “magic tape” or “masking tape” have acidic adhesives.  They will turn yellow, and will turn the paper yellow as well, before falling off and leaving behind a sticky residue.  Although it is best not to use any sort of tape on photographs, there is no very good home alternative for fixing a torn photo.  If the negative is still available making a new print is the best bet.  If it is not available, and the photograph is very valuable and old it might be worthwhile to consult a conservator.  If this is not feasible, there are some types of “archival quality” tapes available at art supply or scrapbook stores.  Look for tapes that are acid free, made with acrylic adhesive, and have passed the PAT.  When applying tape to any tear, keep in mind the following tips:
  • Always tape the back of a photograph - never apply any glue or tape to the emulsion
  • Use the least amount of tape you can possibly use to mend the tear (i.e. don’t use a 6 inch strip to cover a three inch tear). 
  • If possible, snip a small bits of tape from the roll and tack the tear together.  Once the photograph is tacked together, it can then have a new negative made from it.  This will ensure that it will last longer than the tape that is holding it together.
An alternative to using tape is to make your own mending strip with a piece of acid free paper, and some acid free white glue. Apply a thin coating of glue to a thin strip of paper, gently press the strip into place on the back of the photograph, and wipe away the excess glue with a cotton swab. Place the photograph face down on a soft, flat surface and dry it under weight. A good weight for mending photographs is a small candy tin filled with BBs. Thoroughly wash and dry the box before filling it, then tape it shut so the BBs won't fall out if you drop the box.
Do not use paper clips, rubber bands, or even plastic clips on photographs.
Scanning photographs has become very popular and is a good idea for dissemination.  However, it is not necessarily a permanent solution for preservation of photographs.  Scanning photographs creates into digital images, which cannot be seen without aid of a computer or other device unless printed out. There have been some advances in the printers, inks, and papers used to print digital photographs. For more discussion on these, please read the Digital Photographs section of "Starting out right - choosing the media for your purpose."
When framing photographs, use acid free mat board and acid free backing.  Humidity can cause emulsions to stick to glass, so keep a bit of space between the photograph and the glass by using a mat, or even a double mat.  Humidity can cause emulsions to stick to glass.  For more information on framing, please see “Preservation Matting and Framing Overview ." For information on Display of photographs, see: "Hanging and Display of Works of Art and Photographs."