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Geoscience Collections at Morehead State University have not properly been organized or sorted since the Lappin Hall renovations in the mid-1990's. The collections were initiated by John C. Philley in 1960, James Chaplin 1961 and the collections card catalog developed by Jules DuBar when he arrived in 1967. Maintenance of the catalog appears to have ceased in 1981 when DuBar left the university. Specimens collected between 1981 and 1992 often have card-stock labels, but do not appear in the collection catalog. In recent decades, many of our cataloged samples have been lost and/ or damaged because of improper storage. Most of the in-place collection is not recorded in the catalog, thus, much of the collection goes unaccounted for. If specimens aren't properly cataloged, they're often missing information, such as locality or collect ion date, t hat reduces t heir usefulness. Since 2018, student archivists have been engaged in collection maintenance. This effort has progressed from general tidying t o organization and cross-checking cataloged information with existing specimens. This permits damaged and decomposed specimens to be discarded, specimens with information to be accessioned into the catalog, some information-less but exceptional specimens to be cataloged and retained as teaching specimens, and the location of cataloged samples to be recorded. Cataloged samples are in the process of being assigned QR codes through SESAR and form the backbone of a system of loanable specimens of scientific value. Once given a QR code, specimens are being packed for removal to a new science building, after which time the SESAR database will become publicly available.

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Higher Education | Scholarship of Teaching and Learning

Geoscience Archivism - Saving Morehead State's Collections one Rock at a Time



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