When it became apparent that the early July 2023 flooding that took place in Vermont was going to rival other floods that loom large in the state’s collective memory, the Vermont Historical Society decided to establish a new digital archive to collect images and other ephemera.
Vermont Historical Society, based in Barre, VT, holds a considerable number of records of past floods in their collection, including images and video from the Flood of 1927, the Montpelier flood of 1992, and of Tropical Storm Irene in 2011, and others. Those records exist because they were documented by the people of Vermont and sent to the Historical Society to preserve, and they’re currently used by researchers, journalists, and members of the public to recall and understand those events.
Historical Society Librarian Kate Phillips said “this flood will drastically change the landscape of Vermont in ways we do not yet know. It is essential that we document the experiences of individuals and small businesses, as well as new directions in conversations about climate change and housing. We hope that careful documentation of this moment can help inform future decision making, as well as contribute to our collective processing of this monumental event.”
The Vermont Historical Society is inviting the public to submit their photographs, audio files, video recordings, and other related documents to a crowdsourced archive, in order to preserve the memories of this tragic event for the future. You can view and contribute to the archive here.
As part of this initiative, the Historical Society has also begun to expand the media collection for the Flood of 1927 on its archival portal, Digital Vermont, uploading dozens of photographs and scans of documents from their collections for the first time. The 1927 Flood in Vermont Collection can be found on Digital Vermont.
For questions or troubleshooting, contact the Vermont Historical Society at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo of July 2023 flooding in Vermont provided.