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The Blog of the Indiana State Archives

  IARA Divisions State Archives Collections From the Vault Blog

Tales from the Interns | Myren


Hello! My name is Myren Mitchell, and I’m this year's Friends of the State Archives summer 2022 intern. Currently, I am enrolled in Indiana University’s Master of Library Science graduate program specializing in Archives and Special Collections. I have just completed my first year of the program, and I am interested in the hands-on experience putting to practice what I have been learning in my classes through this internship.

I started off my undergraduate experience studying Computer Science. I enjoyed working with computers and coding but found that the tech industry was not a great fit for me. I was also studying history classes on the side, and I began to look for a way to integrate my passions for history and computers. Then, through an opportunity to create an interactive, digital map of Grand Valley State University’s campus with their Archives and Special Collections, I was able to confirm my interest in becoming an archivist.

This summer, I have worked on several projects, including processing a collection from Evansville State Hospital. I have never processed a collection from the beginning before, so I was excited to dive right in. I enjoyed the organization part of the process, deciding which materials should be categorized together into series. There were several different types of media I was able to work with and learn how to store, including photo negatives, film, phonograph records, CDs, scrapbooks, and even a box full of recipe cards! I feel that I have learned a lot through hands-on experience working with all these types of media in this project.

Another project I have worked on involved using the crowdsourcing platform FromThePage. Before this internship, I had no other experience working with this website, and I was interested to learn the behind the scenes work of setting up a project from scratch. I had access to several rolls of microfilm containing information on Indiana’s draft for the Civil War in 1816. I decided to divide the initial project into two smaller ones, since the microfilm has information on both the men who volunteered for the militia and those who were drafted. Now both projects are available to the public here.

When I first began my internship with IARA, I was given a bingo sheet of different things I would most likely run across or experience working in the archive. One of my favorite bingo items was finding fun doodles on documents in the archives. As my internship draws to a close, I am excited to announce that I have successfully completed the entire bingo card!



This summer, I was also given the opportunity to job shadow for a day at the Micrographics Lab. Microfilm has become a recent interest of mine, and I enjoyed getting to spend a day learning how to capture and develop microfilm. I’m eager to continue learning how to properly create and duplicate microfilm. I will finish the rest of my internship working in Micrographics, and I’ve even been offered a part-time job there!