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Summer Dreams for 2024

Greetings Vasa Sisters and Brothers,


Bishop Hill is enjoying a nice break from sub-freezing temperatures and most of the snow has melted. It appears the nice weather and temps will stick around for another week or so. We’ve taken advantage of the nice weather to clean up the yard around the Archive and put away the last of the Christmas décor. As we turn our minds to the coming spring and summer, we’d like to write a quick note on what we have planned for the coming year.

We’re working on a technology grant to update the computers, programs, and other technology that is in the archive. Our computers are currently 10 years old and 1 is nearly out of memory. Our genealogical databases are about 10+ years old. Several census, death data bases and other sources are now available. Genealogist make up the largest group of researchers we receive. We’d also like to make the conference room more accommodating to groups needing a place to meet. We consulted with a Swedish genealogy group and an archivist group on Facebook to get ideas on what we should get. This is a 1:1 match grant and we’ll be sending out requests soon for matching funds.

We just submitted a grant to hire an intern for the summer. If we get the grant, the intern will be scanning and uploading Vasa Stars from the 1920s-30s. Ms. Cuff has offered one of the guest rooms with a private bath and to covering utilities for the intern. The grant is seeking a financial compensation for the scanning. Our goal is to pay the intern better than minimum wage with in-kind and cash. The internship will be 20 hours a week for 12 weeks.

A fun outreach we are planning this summer is Finnish Field Day: Hobby Horse Games (May 25, 1 – 4pm). The international hobby horse competition is held in Finland and there are groups around the world that enjoy riding their hobby horses with each other. In 2017, hobby horsing competitions were introduced to the public through Selma Vilhunen's film Keppihevosten vallankumous (Hobbyhorse Revolution). We’ll have a make-n-take hobby horse station for $10 and several hobby horse activities set up in the yard. We’re looking forward to event.

In Truth and Unity,

Kathy Cuff


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