Working from home Archivist and Adult Services Manager Monique Leahey Sugimoto of the Palos Verdes Library District recently presented an open letter to the Palos Verdes Peninsula community. 

In the letter, she notes there is nothing like a global health crisis to realize we are making and living history right now. The letter invites the community to take an online part in the library district’s special project, “Your Story is the Peninsula’s Story (YSPS). 

“I hope people will realize how much our lives have changed with this pandemic,” Sugimoto said. “I’m used to helping people who come in, but now I’m doing it on the phone.” 

The project was started in 2016 to document the history of folks who live, work and are associated with the Palos Verdes Peninsula. Participants bring in letters, photos, documents or maps to the Palos Verdes Library to scan in their contributions. The data is immediately archived for posterity. 

But now, using the novel coronavirus health crisis as a catalyst, scanning can be done online by going to www.pvld.org and clicking on the YSPS box where community members can contribute documentation by following an easy-to-use template to enter information. 

The archives, which can be accessed through palosverdeshistory.org, already houses material held in the Palos Verdes Library District Local History Room. Included in the collection are published histories, photographs, clipping files, pamphlets, oral histories, maps and records of a variety of organizations. 

Sugimoto said she hopes people realize how much our lives have changed with the pandemic. 

To that end, the library staff has started collecting coronavirus specific images online that will help document how the pandemic is affecting our community. By sharing stories, the community helps build a rich, primary resource of materials that tells a broader story for future generations and researchers. 

“We can still promote materials, help people access e-books, audio books, digital magazines and stream movies on their phones and computers,” Sugimoto said, “but we need to document what this pandemic has done to our lives on the hill.” 

Need help entering your historical data?

E-mail Monique Sugimoto at: msugimoto@pvld.org.

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