The Bush Administration keeps trying to shut down the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC), the grant-making arm of the National Archives and Records Administration. The threat appears once every year as the Administration starts to prepare its budget requests. You can read my previous articles about this at http://tinyurl.com/2mqru9.
Every year the Executive Branch proposes deletion of the agency. Then the Council of State Historical Records Coordinators, the Society of American Archivists, the National Association for Government Archivists and Records Administrators, and many other historical organizations all mobilize a "Save the NHPRC" effort. Thousands of people write to their elected representatives, mobilizing the full House of Representatives to restore the funding. It is now fiscal year 2008 budget preparation time, so you can guess what is happening this year. Once again, the Administration is trying to eliminate the NHPRC. Once again, caring citizens need to mobilize their elected representatives.
The National Historical Publications and Records Commission is a valuable service. The Commission "promotes the preservation and use of America's documentary heritage essential to understanding our democracy, history, and culture." Many of the documents used by genealogists every day would have been destroyed years ago or else never would have been made public if it were not for the efforts of the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.
The New Jersey Department of State has just started an effort to save the NHPRC and has created a web site to publicize the threat and the efforts to save the Commission. While the site is specific to New Jersey, I suspect that other organizations will soon follow. You can see this site at http://www.njarchives.org/links/savenhprc.html.
Your help is needed. Please contact your elected representatives.
My thanks to Maureen Mann for letting me know of this new web site.