Pella Community Memory Database

February 2020 - Volume 2, Issue 2

Pella Public Library is pleased to provide you with this free monthly newsletter keeping you informed on the progress being made on the Pella Community Memory Database (PCMD), a new grant-funded project sponsored by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). We hope you will find this newsletter informative!

We're seeking a Volunteer Coordinator!

Do you like to volunteer? Do you like to work with, organize, and motivate people? Are you excited to participate in a community-changing project?


If so, you may be a perfect fit for our Volunteer Coordinator position! The volunteer coordinator, working closely with the Project Director, would be responsible for maintaining close contact with the nine volunteer teams and holding in-person meetings as necessary. The Volunteer Coordinator would serve as a liason beween the volunteer teams and the Project Director, and would motivate the teams to actively participate in improving the Pella Community Memory Database, as well as recruiting new volunteers to the project.


If you would be interested in volunteering your time to be our Volunteer Coordinator, please contact the Project Director, Chris Brown, at cbrown@cityofpella.com or (641) 628-4268. Thank you!

Potential Partnerships!

It was a busy month for exploring potential new partnerships with the Pella Community Memory Database! We've been contacted by several local organizations, including a church, exploring the possibility of including their own digitized materials in the Database. We also have been in discussions with Central College regarding the possible addition of the Scholte Papers! As suggested, these are the personal correspondence of Dominie H.P. Scholte, and include personal and business letters, land deeds, bank records, and a variety of other materials. Stay tuned and you may soon see new collections appearing in the PCMD alongside of the existing family vertical files collection!

Spotlight On: Transcription

Computers are more advanced now than ever, and they are capable of performing OCR (Optical Character Recognition) on typewritten documents. This allows the text in the documents to be recovered and made searchable so that you can not only search the title of a document but also search though the contents of the document itself.


Where computers still have trouble is with many handwritten documents, especially scripts. Because these documents cannot automatically be read and made searchable, they require a human go to through, read the document, and then transcribe the document into a file (such as a Microsoft Word document). This digital text can then be added to the information about the item and will make the text of a handwritten document searchable.


If you'd like to volunteer to be part of our transcription team, please complete our Volunteer Registration Form.

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Featured Document of the Month: Mortgage Payment Receipt

This original hand written receipt for payment on a mortgage contains a description of the property held by the Rhynsburger family. That purchase was made December 22, 1865. .This document is now a part of the Pella Community Memory Database. View it here.

For More Information

This newsletter is published monthly with funding from an Institute of Museum and Library Services grant.

For more information, please contact:

Chris Brown

Project Director

Pella Public Library

603 Main Street

Pella, IA 50219


641-628-4268

cbrown@cityofpella.com