Nominate to the Top Ten Most Endangered Artifacts Campaign

Nominations are due by March 15, 2013.  To submit, use this Nomination Form.

Is your archive, library, or museum looking for ways to increase community support? Would you like for people know that you really care about your collections and are making efforts to preserve them? Would you like to learn new ways of reaching out to your community?

If so, Oklahoma’s Top 10 Most Endangered Artifacts Campaign is for you! Modeled after programs sponsored by the Virginia Museums Association and other states, the Top 10 Campaign has been extraordinarily effective in helping local archives, libraries, and museums raise funds and increase visitor ship. To learn more about the Virginia program, watch this video.

If your item is selected to participate in the Campaign, you will receive:

  • A free workshop to help develop local marketing and fundraising campaigns
  • Priority ticketing for the April 28 Preservation Road Show at the Oklahoma History Center
  • A complimentary registration to the April 29-30 Collections Care Conference at the Sheraton Hotel in OKC
  • Promotion at the “May Day” event at the State Capitol, along with a travel stipend if you travel more than 100 miles round trip
  • Priority consideration for booking the “Saving Our Family Treasures” traveling exhibit
  • Featured status in the statewide “get out the vote” campaign sponsored by the Oklahoma Cultural Heritage Trust

Here’s how the program works: Oklahoma-based libraries, museums, and collecting institutions may nominate one item from their collection that they believe will engage the public’s attention. For example, an organization may have a basket that traveled to Oklahoma on the Trail of Tears, or a land deed signed by Abraham Lincoln, or an original photograph of an important person or event. The key to success is making sure the item has a compelling story.

Once the item nominated is approved for inclusion in the Top 10 Endangered Artifact Campaign, a statewide media and marketing blitz will take place to encourage the public to vote for the item they believe is most worthy. All voting takes place online, although paper ballots can be entered manually. Organizations nominating items will receiving training, sample press releases, access to OCHT events, and other marketing materials to help “get out the vote” for their item.

At the end of the voting period, votes will be tallied and the one item receiving the most votes will receive the “People’s Choice Award.” The other nine items will be selected by a panel of historians, conservators, and other experts who will take into consideration the importance of the item to Oklahoma. This method is used to ensure a level playing field for smaller, rural organizations.

The Top Ten Artifacts, as determined by the public and the experts, will receive the designation of a “Most Endangered Artifact” and efforts will be made to provide for their care.

To be successful, give careful thought to artifact you choose and be sure to include some really great photographs. A successful nomination will have a great story that will capture the attention of the media, funders, and the public.

To nominate an endangered artifact, use the Online Entry Form by  March 15, 2013

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