In 2022, the Texas State Library and Archives Commission (TSLAC) awarded $25,000 to the Patrick Heath Public Library under its TexTreasures Grant program, to expand our digital resources.
The library applied the funding to aid in the expanded preservation of Boerne’s history with the digitization of "The Boerne Star" issues dated from 1966 to 1993. The issues from 1940 to 1965 had previously been digitized. Patrick Heath Public Library just recently accomplished the task of having the newer issues added, so now users can access fascinating historical tidbits from this area by viewing the newly digitized newspapers. Historians and genealogists can visit the Portal to Texas History website to access issues dating from 1940 to 1993.
The impetus for the library to apply for the grant in the first place were comments made by area residents in the library’s customer satisfaction survey last year. More than a quarter of respondents said they used the library to explore local and genealogical history, and several made remarks about preserving and making available online the documents in the local history section.
Adult Services librarian Robin Stauber, who heads up the library's digitization projects, is elated at the progress being made. “We are so thankful for this grant--and to the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, for recognizing and appreciating the value of digitizing community newspapers for future research needs and to make those as publicly accessible as possible. Through the efforts of our library staff and core volunteers, we are working diligently to make sure as much of our rich community history as possible is online and available 24/7.”
As several library staff members and volunteers continue to provide more documentation on Findagrave.com about people who lived and died in the Hill Country, they have eagerly anticipated the completion of this digitization project. Natalie Morgan, assistant library director, commented, “As each year of the newspapers is added, we are able to paint a clear picture of even more people who are buried in the Boerne Cemetery. We know that family history researchers around the world rely on this information, and we want it to be as complete as possible. This grant has made our mission so much easier!”
Funded by the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services through a grant to the Texas State
Library and Archives Commission (Grant #LS-252486-OLS-22).* (2022)