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October 1, 2014

Contact: Nicole Winger
(916) 653-6575

Explore California History During Archives Month

SACRAMENTO - As California Archives Month gets under way, Secretary of State Debra Bowen is inviting Californians to learn about their own history and attend events hosted by state and local groups.

"If you have an interest in California's colorful past or want to learn how to better preserve your own family history, Archives Month is a perfect time to begin your journey," said Secretary Bowen, the custodian of the State Archives. "I also encourage people to add to California’s history by sharing their experiences and observations through our writing contest."

The Secretary of State's Archives Division will host three free events this month.

  • Sacramento Archives Crawl on October 11 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m View California's treasures and take behind-the-scenes tours of the State Archives during the fourth annual Sacramento Archives Crawl. Participants in the archives crawl will tour four host institutions in Sacramento (State Archives, State Library, Center for Sacramento History, and Sacramento Central Library), view items from other northern California archival repositories and visit with archivists.
  • Digital Archives Day for the Family Historian on October 15 from 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Digitizing historical photographs and records can be a great way to share files and prevent wear and tear on the originals. Learn about digitization and how to manage what has been digitized. Find out more about ever-changing technology and how the short life expectancy of storage media can affect the life and use of these records. Best practices information and online resources will be available.
  • California History Writing Contest entries due October 31. Have the people and events that shaped California’s history come alive for you when visiting a historic place, museum, local history archive or the State Archives? The California Secretary of State invites you to share what you discovered beyond classrooms and books, and why it was especially meaningful to you. Entries must be postmarked or emailed by October 31. The rules and entry form are at

Events will take place at the Secretary of State’s building at 1020 O Street in Sacramento. The California Archives Month poster and more information are at

Since 1850, the Secretary of State has been the custodian of the California State Archives, which includes the official acts of the legislative and executive branches of state government, as well as Golden State history in tens of millions of documents, maps, photographs, film and audio recordings, and artifacts. The State Archives houses approximately 119,000 cubic feet of records in a secure, climate-controlled environment.

For information about the California State Archives collections and upcoming events, or for assistance in a historical research project, go to