March 6, 2013 Edition

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Archives to mark
second anniversary

The Northeast Arkansas Regional Archives, a branch of the Arkansas History Commission, will celebrate its second anniversary with an open house on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Constructed in 2010, NEARA is located at 11 Seventh Street in the Powhatan Historic State Park.

The opening of the archives on March 3, 2011, marked the return of Lawrence County records to Powhatan Historic State Park after being housed for several years at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro.

Dr. Lisa Perry, archival manager, said the holdings of the archives and the number of visitors continue to increase.

"Since opening, NEARA has experienced significant growth and has been a draw for the local economy, with visitors from 30 states conducting research at the facility," she said.

NEARA opened with holdings of approximately 500 cubic feet of records from the old courthouse, 1,400 rolls of microfilm and 3,000 books. Most records were unprocessed and unavailable for public research.

"Acquisitions since 2011 tripled the number of records and nearly doubled the number of books and rolls of microfilm available for research," Perry said. "Thousands of records, including marriages, probates, pensions, family records, business records and court cases, have now been processed, indexed and made available for research."

New acquisitions include government records from Crittenden and Sharp counties, early records of the former Lane Cemetery in Walnut Ridge, aerial photographs of Lawrence County in the 1930s and 1950s, family Bibles, hundreds of photographs, scrapbooks from the Jonesboro Civitan Club, more Lawrence County tax and court records, family records and records of the Dowell Land Company.

"The two-year anniversary celebration is a small way we can say 'Thank You' to the people of Northeast Arkansas for their tremendous support and patronage of the archives," Perry said.

For more information about the celebration, contact Perry at lisa.perry@arkansas.gov or by phone at 870-878-6521.

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