The following excerpt is an article updated March 24, 2017 at shreveporttimes.com:
Louisiana’s archival and historical records are in a state of emergency, whose destruction “would represent nothing less than a devastating and irreparable loss” of the state’s historical and cultural heritage, according to historians who recently gathered for the Louisiana Historical Association’s annual conference.
An executive summary of the Louisiana Historical Association presented at the conference called Louisiana’s historical archives “endangered treasures.”
“They are more than scraps of yellowed paper and tattered leather-bound journals,” the summary stated. “Losing them will sever us off from our past and impair our ability to remain informed citizens, so critical to the functioning of democracy.”
About 50 historians attended the plenary session of the conference that discussed the state of Louisiana’s archives, hailing from several parishes in Louisiana as well as from Georgia, Mississippi, Texas, Massachusetts and even Germany. More than 200 individuals registered for the total conference, according to James Wilson, the secretary-treasurer of the Louisiana Historical Association.
“We all love history, and we’re trying to protect it,” said Michelle Riggs, a panelist and archivist at LSU-Alexandria. “This is a call to arms. This is everyone’s history.”