Franco-American Collection

Digitization Day to Take Place on Saturday, Oct. 22

James Myall in front of a picture of a nurse and a soldier in an infirmary.

Saturday, October 22, marks the final event in the Franco-American Collection’s program “Franco-Americans During Wartime: A Heritage of Service.” On that day, between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., people can bring in wartime-related materials to be digitized.  They will leave with their original materials as well as a digital copy, and have the option of depositing a digital copy at the Collection to be preserved and used for research. In addition to the digitization activities, Jeannette Gregoire will be playing piano, and there will be light refreshments and exhibits.

This program has been sponsored in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities as part of its Common Heritage Grant Program, an effort to help preserve historical materials by making digital copies of items held by the community.  The Collection has focused on the wartime experiences of Franco-Americans, whether in military service or on the homefront.

 “People may not realize what wonderful materials they have in scrapbooks or attics,” said Janet Roberts, Coordinator of the Collection.  “They may have letters or pictures from an ancestor that served in the Spanish-American War, or movies from someone who recently served in Afghanistan.  We’re also hoping that some people will bring in materials from the homefront, such as ration books or pictures of Victory Gardens. We want to help them preserve those memories by creating a digital copy.  At the same time, they will add to our understanding of the past.”

The event is free and open to the public and will be held in Rooms 170 and 171 of USM’s Lewiston-Auburn College, 51 Westminster Street, Lewiston. For more information, please visit, call 753-6545, or email The Collection is usually open Mon.-Thurs., from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., although it is best to call ahead to confirm.