Welcome to the “To Boldly Preserve: Archiving for the Next Half-Century of Space Flight” conference at the American Institute of Physics. Funded by the National Science Foundation, this conference has the goal of encouraging domestic and international space actors to collect and preserve aerospace history by formulating pragmatic historical and policy justifications as well as archiving best practices, models, and support networks aimed at the preservation of this unique experience.
Whether a corporation, association, nonprofit, or government entity, your work comprises part of the tapestry of the human exploration and exploitation of space. As historians and archivists, we want your records collected and preserved so that future generations will have accurate and complete archives of what happened. We cannot tell your story without the data.
“To Boldly Preserve” is occurring now because a new constellation of challenges and opportunities face space history. New forms of electronic communication and social media are expanding the world of records even as the number and type of actors increases. The records we seek to collect are significantly different from those previously viewed as central to understanding space history.
By (1) identifying under-represented historic actors (including New Space firms and groups of people), (2) demonstrating what records can be collected from contemporary practitioners, (3) addressing practical issues like legal concerns, ITAR restrictions, and fear of litigation, and (4) providing archival models for oral histories, digital, print, and less conventional collections (such as software and artifacts), “To Boldly Preserve” will promote the more robust and comprehensive collection and preservation of space history.
We look forward to seeing you.
For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.