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Bringing together, promoting and assisting heritage & historical organizations located in Southeastern Ontario, Canada.

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Leeds County Heritage Network
Mallorytown, January 25, 2012
Present: Doug Bond, Molly Sorenson, Barb Morrison, Bill Boulton, Pauline, Pat Ladd, Pierre Mercier, Patrick McMaster, Myrtle Johnston, Diane Haskins, Erika Heesen

LCHN brochure
Everyone liked the brochure. Contributions were collected from a number of members. Some members are still outstanding, and will be contacted by Erika and Patrick.
We are considering doing a small survey for visitors to hand out with the brochure. Questions to put on the survey will be discussed on Heritage Talk (www.heritagetalk.ca).

Networking event update (Pierre)
No news currently to report. However, Pierre wanted to mention the possibility of a “community heritage/history highlights” brochure. It was generally agreed that this should be a separate brochure from the LCHN brochure.

Doors Open update (Pierre)
The deadline for Doors Open 2012 has currently passed, but members who are not participating this year should think about next year. The committee for this area almost died out, but is back better than ever. In TLTI, there are 5 sites in Lyndhurst alone, as well as the FABR office, St. Brendan’s and Church of the Redeemer in Rockport, and Springfield House/Archives in Escott. Pierre and Diane briefly commented on the workload involved in running a Doors Open event, and how there are two paid employees of the Brockville Museum able to dedicate time to the event, as well as the Brockville Chamber of Commerce handling money and receipts for the event. Pierre and Diane will get together to brainstorm ways we can better spread the workload in our area.

Digitization Workshop (LTI Archives/Lakes and Islands)
Leeds and the Thousand Islands Archives and "Lakes & Islands, Times Past" are pleased to be offering this much-requested Introduction to Digitization workshop. This workshop will be a general introduction to the archival digitization of printed and audio-visual material. We’ll discuss what to do before you start, the hardware and software needed, and the importance of metadata. Please bring in items that are of particular interest to your organization!
Thanks to generous funding support from the Ontario Trillium Foundation, this workshop is offered free of charge. Please contact Erika Heesen (archivist@ltiarchives.ca, 613-888-1856) or Patrick McMaster (admin@lakesandislands.ca) to register or for more information.

Introduction to Digitization Workshop
Thursday, February 9, 2012
Time: 10am-3pm
Location: Elgin Community Hall, Elgin, Ontario
Erika mentioned that they will make extra resource booklets to give to those who are unable to make the workshop.

FABR (Patrick)
Patrick showed the group some of the features available via the Frontenac Arch Biosphere Reserve’s website, www.explorethearch.ca. They have a number of maps that track historic structures and features such as cemeteries. FABR is very open to input, so we should all check out the site and give them our feedback. FABR would like to integrate links into the history section, so information that we are collecting via the LCHN should be shared with people like FABR. We should also consider partnering with FABR for something like the “community heritage highlights” brochure discussed earlier.

LCHN Site Redesign - Spring (Patrick)
Patrick discussed his future plans for the LCHN website, www.leedsheritage.ca. The site will be revamped and rebranded to more closely match the LCHN brochure. The front page will be for people interested in history and the area, along with an online version of the LCHN brochure, while there will be a member log-in to offer information to LCHN members. This information could include statistics on the number of people visiting the website and member profiles, survey responses, resource handouts, LCHN logo for branding.
Members will also be able to post information about news and upcoming events on the website, by sending it to info@leedsheritage.ca. This way we have a central hub for posting news and events. It’s very important to have a web presence.

Patrick also made the point that we are inclusive, and we should invite any other interested heritage organizations in the area to join us.

Discussion: additional strategies beyond the brochure for a unified marketing presence and/or cooperative initiatives
Social Media:
Some discussion also revolved around the idea of using social media such as Facebook and Twitter to promote ourselves. Patrick and Erika will be looking into doing this for the LCHN as a whole, and members expressed an interest in a workshop on using social media.
Myrtle mentioned the Colonel Edward Jessup Branch of the United Empire Loyalists is now on Facebook: www.facebook.com/UELAC.Jessup
The Rideau Lakes Municipal Heritage Advisory Committee has hired MyTours to create an app for Rideau Lakes, that will be available online through the Apple Store. Patrick and Erika will be examining possibilities for doing this for the LCHN.

Loaning Material
Diane commented that we should share things that we have that we are prepared to lend to another group. Diane said that the outfits they use for the school children who visit the Red Brick School would be available for loan. The Mallory Coach House members were quite interested. Members can discuss this on Heritage Talk under Collections -> Exchanges & Loans.

Events in our area are generally being organized by the St. Lawrence War of 1812 Bicentennial Alliance. After a brief look at their website, www.celebrate1812.ca, it was realized that very little in the Leeds County area was mentioned. Patrick and Erika plan to contact Jan Bonhomme about integrating information about the Heritage Network into their site, particularly under the ‘museums and sites’ listing.
Members should also check out the free training sessions the Alliance will be offering, as well as investigate other opportunities with the Event Resource Center. For further information on the Events Centre, equipment and event training, contact Jan Bonhomme, Event Centre Manager at 613-272-3200 or allianceadvantage@sympatico.ca.

General updates:
Upcoming Conferences:
Ontario Heritage Conference, Kingston, May 31-June 3. http://heritage2012.com
Ontario Genealogical Society Conference, Kingston, June 1-3. http://www.ogs.on.ca/conference2012/

Diane mentioned S.L.A.T.E., “So Let’s All Talk Education”, a group that brings together those who work or volunteer in historic school houses. The S.L.A.T.E. Workshop & Conference provides sites with historic school houses an opportunity to share ideas, collaborate, and network with other sites who share the same challenges. The 2012 S.L.A.T.E. conference and workshop will be held April 15 & 16, 2012 at the Quinte Educational Museum & Archives (qema1978.com). To have your name added to the email list, send any changes or new names to museum@lincoln.ca . If you have information or questions to share with other SLATE people, you can send them to that email and they will be posted.

It is the 125th anniversary of the Red Brick School this year. They will be having a fashion show by the Kingston Historic Costume Club on June 2 at the Red Brick School House. Doug added that if you do research particular to a historical person from the area, you can have an actor perform in that persona.

Molly & Barb mentioned that the Coach House is participating in the Mallory Winter Festival and will be receiving the 1812 tickle trunk.
Bill mentioned that the Leeds & 1000 Islands Historical Society is celebrating their 20th year. You can check their website, www.ltihistoricalsociety.org, for meeting updates and older newsletters. If you subscribe to the newsletter, you can now get it delivered to your email inbox and in *colour*! The next newsletter will feature the scandalous story of John Fitzsimmons.

Pat Ladd from Lyn said that they would also be participating in Doors Open. They plan to have a wine and cheese fundraiser but no date has yet been set. They are also looking for more volunteers (hopefully younger) for Heritage Place.

Myrtle will publish news about events in their newsletter. Send her information at myrtleejohnston@gmail.com.

Next Meeting: Wednesday, March 7 at 2pm at the Elgin Community Room (next to the library).