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August 1, 2001
Contact: Dan A. Gwadosky
Maine State Archives Reopens after 4 month Hiatus for Repairs
AUGUSTA – The Maine State Archives reopened its search room after a 4 month hiatus to repair damage caused by a broken water filter.
“I am pleased that the Archives is now fully reopened to patrons, as well as staff,” said Secretary Gwadosky. “The renovations that have occurred as a result of the repairs provide improved facilities for the general public and researchers who utilize the services of the Archives.”
“The State Archives is a valuable resource to Maine,” said Gwadosky. “Over 90 million pages of important government records have been preserved here, including Maine’s original constitution.”
A brief program was held to unveil the newly renovated Search Room. Remarks were offered by Secretary of State Dan Gwadosky and State Archivist James Henderson. Archive volunteers were recognized for their service, as was the Maine State Library for their contributions during the repair and renovation process. Tours of the Archives were offered to those in attendance.
On the evening of Friday, March 10, 2001, a broken water filter allowed water to flood three floors of the State Archives. Water was as much as three inches deep throughout parts of the building and flowed downward over stacks of unique archival documents.
During the 4 months the facility was closed, Archive staff and volunteers worked to salvage and restore important documents considered to be permanent records of the state. While workmen removed asbestos beneath flooring that was loosened by the flooding and repaired other damage to the building. Archive customers continued to receive service by making telephone and e-mail requests for information, and also had access to certain records through a unique arrangement with the Maine State Library.
The archival program at the Maine State Archives has preserved millions of pages of Maine’s permanently valuable government records for future generations.