Archiving the Past: Building Some Aspect of Community

In the last two years, I have truly learned what the definition of community is by attending the University of Scranton. It is a comradery about having a place that makes you want to be better for the sake of a group. In Northport, the place that has been by home for almost eighteen years, our definition of community is different than Scranton’s. For the longest time, I thought that community in Northport was only shared through one’s social and academic circles. I saw this as a daughter/sister/friend/student/performer, but for the longest time I never felt that I fit into the title as a resident. Working and interacting with Northport Historical Society made me realize that they were fighting for the same acceptance Scranton values.

It was strengthening to use my skills, but what was most rewarding was being able to see that preserving history is used to help unite the town. This promotion of what we were would have a better influence on what Northport inspires us to be. I saw that by working with the closely-knit staff, especially with Terry Reid, who passionately inspired me with that message. I also saw, through cataloging items that ended up in pop-up exhibits, that it made residents love Northport more. I looked through the eyes of older people, young adults, and children, and I enjoyed their stories of the past. Northport Historical Society gave free items and tours, yet the organization was trying to be the force of connection instead of the circles that have been placed.

During my time this summer, I never fully encountered any challenges when working or helping with the organization. I was worried though because I do have a young voice compared to people who have worked in the industry longer than I have. Oftentimes, they had conversations about history and life in general, and I sometimes felt that I couldn’t relate. Yet they treated me as one of their own counterparts who can handle anything that is in front of them, and my confidence grew as a result.

Amelia Semple, English ’25

5 Replies to “Archiving the Past: Building Some Aspect of Community”

  1. Hi Amelia! The Northport Historical Society seems like it has been a great fit for you this summer! It is always a great feeling when you’re able to use your skills to help others and that’s exactly what you did here. I also worked with a lot of older interns this summer and felt kind of out of place at first, but just like you and your other coworkers, they accepted me, and I felt like I belonged after just a few days. I’m glad you had a good experience this summer and I hope the knowledge you gained this summer will help you further down the road!

  2. Hi Amelia!
    It is very inspiring that the Northport Historical Society works towards building a community. I agree that the community at The University of Scranton is very united and I am happy that you were able to experience this as you were working as an intern over the summer! I enjoyed hearing about your experiences and I wish you luck as you continue working towards your future career!

  3. Hi Amelia! It is very interesting to know that this society was able to bring together a whole community and that you got such positive experiences from it. I am glad that you were accepted as a young lady in this experience and that they were able to treat you like their own.

  4. Hi Amelia,

    The take aways you note from this experience are incredible. I’m thrilled you feel the same sense of community that I also feel at this wonderful university. It’s great you were able to experience the sense of community and connection in the town thanks to the historical society. I’m sure you learned a lot of interesting things through seeing through the eyes of different generations. It sounded like a wonderful experience.

  5. Hello, Amelia!

    It is awesome to see your internship come full circle! When I first read about your Royal Experience this summer, I was curious to see how being an archivist at a historical site would impact your career aspirations and perspective as a whole. Hearing that this internship allowed you to grow on a personal level is really great. Understanding history and how it relates to your life is admirable. It is wonderful that you found a since of community and strengthened your self-confidence through this experience.

    Do you think this led you closer to confirming your career goals? How will you continue to use and develop the skills you learned at the historical site? Do you plan to dive deeper into the history of your town and other locations as well? It was great learning about your experience, and I wish you all the best in your future endeavors.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *