Thrilled to begin working as WAR’s 2015-2016 intern, archivist-in-training Kaitlin Clark Hackbarth is a first year Archives/History graduate student at Simmons College. Kaitlin holds a BA from Smith College in English Literature and the Study of Women and Gender.
What drew you to archives?
How to be brief about this…I’ll just say my entire undergraduate career. Allow me to elaborate.
I like to say that I wandered into Smith College’s Special Collections during first year orientation and never quite left. Months later, after having the time of my life poring over letters from the Smith College Relief Unit for a final paper, I applied to the Archives Concentration. As an undergrad, I did research at the Smith College Archives, the Sophia Smith Collection, the Mortimer Rare Book Room, the Special Collections at the University of Massachusetts–Amherst, and the Sexual Minorities Archives. Through the Archives Concentration, I interned at the Englewood Public Library Archives, the Margaret Sanger Papers Project at New York University, and I’m From Driftwood: The LGBTQ Story Archive.
What drew me to archives was the textured way archival material brought history to life. The professors and archivists I was privileged to work with called these moments ‘Aha!’ moments. My classes and internships made me aware of the huge potential archives had to create change. Additionally, the archivists I worked are some of the greatest, most helpful and encouraging people I know.
Why did you get involved with WAR?
I became involved in WAR because I am passionate about finding collaborative solutions to the myriad of issues facing women. I also love archives (in case you’ve forgotten), and the phenomenal individuals that work within them! WAR is the perfect combination of my interests.
What’s your favorite memory from an SAA conference?
Unfortunately, I have never attended an SAA conference. That being said, I will be changing that, and am very much looking forward to attending my first SAA conference!