Friday, March 26, 2010

Archives Trip Tips

Are you planning a trip to the Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives this summer? If you do a little preparation before you leave home, your time at the Archives can be more productive.

Planning to spend the night in Frankfort and need to reserve a hotel room? There are a number of reasonably priced hotels not too far from the Archives. For a list of motels and hotels, see here:Frankfort Hotels Since I always arrive in Frankfort on US 127, I usually stay at the Hampton Inn or Holiday Inn Express, both located just off US 127. There are a number of restaurants nearby too. It is about a 5-10 minute drive on the East-West Connector from this area to the Archives.

The Archives is located at 300 Coffee Tree Road. Their hours are from 10 am to 4 pm EDT. If you plan to spend the day, take along snacks for lunch as the only food and drink at the Archives comes from vending machines. There is usually plenty of parking available in front of the building, but if it is full, you can park behind the Archives.

Upon entering the building, go the guard's desk, where you must show identification and fill out a form listing your name and address. As only paper, pencils and laptops are permitted in the research room, you will be assigned a locker for other items. It is helpful if you are wearing something with pockets as you will be issued a locker key on a large ring - you do not want to lose it.

If this is your first visit to the research room, take a few minutes to look around. Spend some time at the table with 3-ring notebooks with names of the counties on the spines. These notebooks list what county records are available at the archives. If it is a microfilmed record, the number of the microfilm roll is listed. Write it down. There is open access to microfilm from the drawers and, when finished reading the roll, return it to one of the nearby carts. Records in original form (not microfilmed) are ordered with the assistance of an employee at the desk. When those records arrive, you will be given a pair of disposable cotton gloves to use when handling the records. If you need copies of documents, the employees will do this for you. Payment for all copies is made when you are ready to leave the research room for the day.

A wide variety of records are available at the Archives - deeds, some vital statistics, wills, marriages, county court minutes, circuit court minutes and case bundles, some military records, and much, much more. An overview can be found here: Archives

Visiting the Archives is exciting, but also allow time to visit historic downtown Frankfort and the Kentucky History Center

No comments: