"What Are You Working On, Pamla Eisenberg?"

Ever wonder what exciting new projects the many employees at NARA are working on? The “What are You Working On?” blog feature aims to introduce a variety of NARA employees and highlight some of the exciting projects we are working on around the agency. Check for this blog series on Wednesdays!

This week, we introduce Pamla Eisenberg, an Audio-Visual Technician at the Nixon Library.

Pam with statues in Museum gallery (Can you name these familiar faces?)

Pam with statues in Museum gallery (Can you name these familiar faces?).

What is your name and title?

Pamla EisenbergAudio Visuals Tech

Where is your job located?

The Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum, Yorba Linda, CA.

What is your job in a nutshell?

The large nutshell: Assisting researchers, in-house staff, and the public with image request needs.  This could be scanning historic negatives or prints, gathering images for our online presentations and museum exhibits, for an author’s publication use or simple inquisitive photo researching.  Our image collection ranges back to the 1880s.  From Nixon family portraits, to world events during his political career.

This spring, from mid-March to late June, I was the only AV representative on staff, during the Nixon archive move, from College Park, MD to our campus in Yorba Linda, CA.  (21-Mega-truck over 6 weeks)   I organized the AV collections of film, video, audio tapes, equipment and images, plus various supplies into our new archive storage area.   I jokingly called it my new fitness program, ‘pumping box!’

What are you working on right now?

I have just finished an approx. 30-image request for Nixon Staffer Dwight Chapin, of China trip images.

This gave me a chance to dive into the 1972 China trip, meetings with Chou En-Lai & Mao, and look for much more background, infrequently noticed images of scenery, VIPs in the entourage, buildings, rural areas, and their travel on the Spirit of ’76’ plane they flew to China in.

After that I worked the late afternoon as reference attendant in the research library.   While I’m working ‘the desk,’ I’m also organizing the External Hard Drive housing our digital image collection.

This is an on-going project to streamline access, and add metadata to the digitized images of the White House Photo Office collection, and Nixon family images into one system.

Shelving full of aluminum film canisters in the new audio-visual stack areas.

New shelving in the audio-visual stack areas full of aluminum film canisters.

How long have you been at NARA?

I began working for NARA in late January 2010.

Have you worked at any other NARA location?

No.  I formerly managed the Photo Archive, image research and copyright sales for the Orange County Register newspaper.

What has changed since you started at NARA?

Every day is a change in routine for us here – Especially since we are pioneering a new Presidential Library collection presence in California.

Palletized documents from the first truck load into the new stack area.  Pamla grew some muscle unloading these materials into the new stack area!

Palletized documents from the first truck load into the new stack area. Pamla grew some muscle unloading these materials into the new stack areas!

Do you have a favorite day at NARA, or a favorite discovery or accomplishment?

My favorite days with NARA are just about every day.   My two visits discovering A2 and the National Archives in D.C., and ARC training were a lot of fun, and completely enjoyable.   I’d jump at another chance to work with all the helpful folks back in College Park.   I’m also very proud to have set-up the AV archive storage here. (Without injuries!)  It’s a great plus being able to work (I call it ‘play’) with the images.    Considering, I already have a large Flickr-Pro image presence online, and have fun snapping, gathering, and scanning current and antique publications as one of my passions outside of work.

What are your passions or interests outside of work?

My Flickr-Pro image presence online, and sharing photos, and documenting antique book or postcard illustrations.  Listening to audio books, or exploring the Internet Archive Old Time Radio programs, Sherlock Holmes Theater & Lux Radio Theater with Cecil B. DeMille being a current fave.  Plus visiting historic gardens – The Huntington Library & Gardens is a favorite photo taking afternoon.   I also collect Medieval & Baroque music, and have played the cello, and performed in various styles over the years.  From classic style, to standing and playing it as a bass with Pre-WWII jazz bands or fun with the former newsroom band I was part of, playing rock songs during celebrations.

What is the last book you read, or the last book you loved?

I’m currently listening to the Ellis Peters mystery series starring Cadfael the 12th c. Benedictine monk.

(Some may remember 1990s British TV mini-series on PBS, starring Sir Derek Jacobi)

Before the Cadfael series, I explored Agatha Christie Poirot mysteries.

Before that, I listened to Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice and Sense & Sensibility.

Next on the list is CS Lewis. – The Screwtape Letters.

Pam with statues in Museum gallery (Can you name these famous people as well?).

Pam with statues in Museum gallery (Can you name these famous people as well?).

Meet more NARA employees: http://www.archives.gov/careers/employees/

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