Wednesday, October 31, 2012

More things to do on St. Simons

Fort Frederica
Fort Frederica, courtesy of the Atlanta History Center
Are you still searching for something to do before the annual meeting? Do you need an excuse to linger in the Golden Isles before heading back to work? Here are some attractions and activities to enjoy around the annual meeting.

Ghost tours: It's Halloween, so celebrate the season with a tour of St. Simons' haunted sites!
Enjoy the outdoors: St. Simons Island and the rest of the Golden Isles offer a variety of outdoor activities, so get moving!
Day trips: The Golden Isles and coastal cities of Georgia offer lots of attractions and activities to enjoy. Check out Brunswick, Sea Island, Little St. Simons Island, and Jekyll Island.
Pamper yourself: The Golden Isles have several day spas and health clubs, so pump some iron or get your facial on.

Rise & shine: It's a conference, so you might need some caffeine to get you started.
Don't forget the weather:  In light of Frankenstorm, check the weather before you start packing.

We'll see you in a week!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Advocacy workshop at annual meeting

Sign up now to take part in the advocacy workshop sponsored by Friends of the Georgia Archives (FOGAH) at the SGA Annual Meeting. Training will be conducted by Joe Tanner of Tanner and Associates and will cover how to contact your representative so that your voice will be heard!

The training is free and is open to both members of SGA and anyone in the SE Georgia area who wants to participate. It will be on Thursday, November 8 from 3:00 to 4:30 PM at the conference venue, Sea Palms Resort on St. Simons Island, Georgia.

Registration is required because of the limited space. Please visit to register. 

Questions about the training? Contact Dianne Cannestra at
Questions about registration? Contact Renna Tuten at

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Annual Meeting Registration deadline

Online registration for the 2012 SGA Annual Meeting will end on Monday, October 29. For those who do not register online by this date, you may register onsite at the conference on November 8 by check only. We will not be able to take registration by credit card at the conference site. If you plan on registering by mail before the conference, please make sure the Administrative Assistant receives your check by Friday, November 2 at the latest. Send any checks to the following address:

Society of Georgia Archivists
c/o Rebecca Landel-Hernandez
P.O. Box 688
Decatur, Georgia 30031-0688

For questions, please contact Local Arrangments Chair Paul Crater at

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Who wants to trolley?

Opening of Coastal Highway, St. Simon's Island, Ga. 1928. Foltz Photography Studio Photographs, MS 1360. Courtesy of the Georgia Historical Society
Opening of Coastal Highway, Motorcade, St. Simon’s Island, Ga.,
1928. Foltz Photography Studio Photographs, MS 1360.
Courtesy of the Georgia Historical Society.
Are you interested in taking a trolley tour of St. Simons as part of your annual meeting experience? If so, the Local Arrangements Committee wants to hear from you!

We have the opportunity to schedule a group tour of the island by St. Simons Island Trolley Company, but we need a minimum number of people to sign up. So, please take a minute (seriously) to take our Trolley poll and indicate your preferred date and time. If we have sufficient interest by the end of this week (10/28), we'll offer a sign-up sheet.

The trolley tour is $23/adult and $10/child and includes the Lighthouse, Bloody Marsh, Fort Frederica, Retreat Plantation, and Christ Church.

Get Ready for St. Simons!

Hi everyone! If you're looking forward to this year's annual meeting in St. Simons as much as we (the local arrangements committee) are, you'll want to know in advance what the island has to offer outside of our excellent roster of speakers. Below you'll find links about dining, shopping, and tourism on the island. If you happen to be a St. Simons insider, please leave additional recommendations in the comments section!

New Georgia Encyclopedia entry on St. Simons Island
(This entry provides links to related articles and information about the island.)

Urban Spoon's list of St. Simons restaurants, rated
Ditto for Trip Advisor

List of local shops

Winn-Dixie (220 Retreat Vlg)
Harris Teeter (600 Sea Island Rd, #23)

St Simons Drug Co (209 Longview Plaza Driveway)
CVS (1650 Frederica Road and 30 Market Street)

St. Simons Lighthouse

Arthur J. Moore Methodist Museum

Wheel Fun Rentals (bike rentals)

Left Bank Art Gallery

St. Simons Island Trolley Tours

Fort Frederica National Monument

Salt Marsh Nature Tours

 Shrimping Excursions aboard the Lady Jane

Calendar of events, November 5-11

Explore St. Simons Island and Visit St. Simons Island both have lots of suggestions for visitors, too.

Image courtesy of the Georgia Historical Society.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Today's update from FOGAH and GA in the news

From FOGAH President Dianne Cannestra:

As of yesterday, five of the 10 remaining employees will still be losing their jobs October 31.  We are continuing to work through our consultant, Joe Tanner and Associates, to decrease that number.  He shares our opinion that all 10 of the employees are essential to the Archives operation.  

Unless more surprises are coming our way, it does appear that the Archives will remain in Morrow, even after the Archives operation in transferred to the University System.  Just in case, the FOGAH Board is providing rational to the consultants regarding the benefit to not physically moving the Archives from its current location.

We still need to identify volunteers around the state who will personally make contact with their state legislators after receiving training and “talking points” from our consulting firm.  If you would be willing to volunteer, please email me at with either your district number or your nine digit zip code and I will add you to the list.  The first training session will be November 8 in St. Simons Island from 4:00 pm to 5:30 so we are especially interested in volunteers from South Georgia right now.

Because the consultant contract fee was not anticipated and thus not in the FOGAH budget, you can also assist in saving the Archives by making a donation to FOGAH for the “Consultant Fee” fund.  You can send a check to FOGAH, 5800 Jonesboro Road, Morrow GA 30260 or by PayPal at  Please check that web site frequently for additional updates.

Links to news items after the jump:

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Update from FOGAH

From FOGAH President Dianne Cannestra:

"After reading the October 18, 2012 Press Release from Governor Deal’s office, the FOGAH Legislative Affairs Committee had a conference call with our Legislative Affairs Consultant.  It is unclear how the latest news will impact on the termination of the 7 employees.  The consultant will attempt to get more information on that question as soon as possible.  He shares our opinion that all 7 of the employees are essential to the Archives operation.  It was also not clearly stated that the Archives will remain in Morrow.  We will be working on that clarification as well.

We are all very appreciative of the Governor’s intervention and are especially excited about the move to the University System.  Please write letters to the Governor thanking him for his intervention as soon as possible.
Our fight for restoration of the budget is not over.  The $125,000 is obviously not nearly enough.  No matter where the Archives resides organizationally,  we need to convince our senators and representatives that the Archives needs $5.4 million to get back to the model Archives it once was and be open 5 days a week. 

The first task in the consultants work plan is to identify volunteers around the state who will personally make contact with their state legislators after receiving training and “talking points” from our consulting firm.  If you would be willing to volunteer, please email me at and I will add you to the list.

Because the consultant contract fee of $3,000 per month for 6 months was not anticipated and thus not in the FOGAH budget, you can also assist in saving the Archives by making a donation to FOGAH for the “Consultant Fee” fund.  You can send a check to FOGAH, 5800 Jonesboro Road, Morrow GA 30260 or by PayPal at  Please check that web site frequently for additional updates."

Links to news coverage below the jump.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Georgia Archives announcement in the News


Statement from FOGAH on the Georgia Archives remaining open

Although the Governor's press release raises a number of questions,
it's fundamentally good news.  Archives is in a better place today
than it was yesterday.  With continued efforts, things may improve

FIRST AND FOREMOST, FOGAH encourages EVERYONE to send an email or
letter to the Governor thanking him for his support.  Without his
efforts, we wouldn't have this victory.

Everyone is concerned about the staff -- one of the unanswered
questions.  Please remember that staffing decisions are ultimately the
Secretary of State's, not the Governor's.  It's one thing to ask the
Governor to continue efforts to support the Archives and the Staff,
but please avoid language that sounds demanding.

We still have lots of work to do.  We need to make sure that the
Archives has adequate support when transferred to the Board of
Regents.  That means meeting with members of the Assembly --
preferably in their district before the beginning of session, rather
than at the Capitol.  We're planning an advocacy training session at
the SGA meeting so that we can all work together as effectively as
possible.  Stay tuned for details.

Again, please use all available channels to say "thanks" to the Governor!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Recent News from the Georgia Archives

Today Secretary of State Brian Kemp released a statement explaining the new appointment system for the Georgia Archives.

This news was covered far and wide, and incorporated into a new AJC article about the immigration bill that Secretary Kemp has used as an example for the increase in services his office provides.

Kaye Minchew, of the Troup County Historical Society and the Coalition to Save Georgia Archives was interviewed in a WABE story on the new.

Chris Davidson, Director of the Georgia Archives, release the following information about the appointment system:

"The Archives began yesterday afternoon making appointments with researchers for November.  To make an appointment, contact me by phone or email and pick the type, day, and time of an appointment.  Researchers will be limited to one appointment per month.  For a list of appointment choices, go to:

Some additional links covering the story:

Monday, October 15, 2012

Update on the Georgia Archives from FOGAH

After much deliberation and talking with many different people, on October 11, 2012, I signed, as President of the Friends of the Georgia Archives and History (FOGAH), a contract with the legislative affairs consulting firm Joe Tanner & Associates, Inc.  The contact is $3,000 a month for six months.

As you know the Archives budget has been severely cut for the past several years.  Although the Coalition to Save the Archives has worked tirelessly to restore some or all of the funding, we have had very limited success.  The latest cut which resulted in the decision to close the Archives to the public made us realize that a more organized approach must be taken.  The legislative and budget process is very complex and requires very specialized expertise and the ability to contact the appropriate legislators and budget officials.  The FOGAH Board of Directors believes Joe Tanner & Associates, Inc.  is the perfect firm to assist us.

Very shortly, we will share the entire work plan with all of you because all of you will be asked to assist.  One of the first tasks is to identify individuals who live in each house and senate district in Georgia.  We will be asking those individuals to make contact with each legislator after specialized training and talking points have been given to you by Joe Tanner & Associates, Inc.  Our goal is to work with the Governor and the General Assembly to put the Georgia Archives on more stable financial footing for years to come. 

You can also assist by making a donation to FOGAH that is designated to the “Consultant Fund”.   This $3,000 a month is an expense that was not anticipated and is not covered by our current budget.  You can make the donation by sending a check to FOGAH, 5800 Jonesboro Road, Morrow GA 30260 or by using PayPal on the FOGAH web site,

Thank you in advance for your assistance in saving our Archives.

Dianne Cannestra

Thursday, October 04, 2012

Items Needed: 2012 SGA Scholarship Auction

It’s time for the Annual SGA Scholarship Auction! Each year the Scholarship Committee sponsors the auction to raise funds for the four scholarships offered by SGA. This year's auction will be part silent and part live auction, with the silent auction opening at noon on Thursday and ending that evening at the conclusion of the live auction so that everyone will have a chance to bid on something!

Each year members and institutions from around the state donate wonderful items to be auctioned off and we hope this year will be no different. We need your donations to continue supporting the professional development of archivists and students from Georgia. We hope that each of you will consider donating to this wonderful event!

If you have any questions about the auction or would like to donate an item to be auctioned, please contact Scholarship Chair Allison Galloup either by email at or by phone at (404) 978-2133.

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Rally Round-Up

Thank you to everyone who showed their support for the Georgia Archives by attending the rally today at the State Capitol!

There was a wonderful turnout, with archivists, genealogists, historians, students and other well-wishers in attendance.

Speakers included Dianne Cannestra of the Friends of Georgia Archives and History, former U.S. Attorney/Congressman Bob Barr, UGA historian James Cobb, Emma Davis-Hamilton of the African-American Genealogical Society, Senator Gail Davenport, Representative Debbie Buckner, and Kaye Minchew of the Troup County Archives and the Coalition to Preserve the Georgia Archives.

A surprise(d) speaker was Mayor J.B. Burke of Morrow, who gave impassioned comments about the importance of the Georgia Archives to Morrow, Clayton County and the State.

Press was well-represented, and coverage of the rally has already appeared in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Kudos to the speakers, organizers and attendees!

You can share your photos or reflections on the event in the SGA newsletter. Send submissions to Joshua Kitchens by October 12, 2012 at