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Delaware Public Archives gives "behind the scenes" tour during Dover Days

James Dawson/Delaware Public Media

The annual Old Dover Days Festival is Saturday and Delaware Public Archives is joining in by offering a “behind the scenes” tour.

If you were born, married or attended public school in Delaware, eventually the Delaware Public Archives in Dover receives information that detail these parts of your life through documents from the State, a County or municipalities.

And Public Archives outreach and public services manager Tom Summers says this Saturday they’ll give the public a glimpse at what they do with those documents.


“People are actually going to go on a tour - behind-the-scenes. And what we’re going to do is go on a tour of what the document would go through as it comes through the building," said Summers. "We’ll take the folks to the area where the document actually enters the building, which will be the loading dock. And then from there, we’ll talk a little bit about what it goes through at that point. And then we’ll go back to the processing room and that’s where the documents are actually arranged and organized.”

Summers notes Delaware Public Archives serves as the official government repository for State, County and local government records. And he feels it’s important for people know how those documents - such as marriage licenses or birth certificates - are handled and preserved there.


We’ll show how we humidify documents before they are put into a vault. We’ll go into the vault itself and show how the documents are actually preserved. And we’ll talk a little bit about the lighting, a little bit about the environmentals  - in terms of the coolness and humidity,” said Summers.

The tour starts at 1:30 p.m.and lasts about one hour.  No reservations are required.


Dover Days runs from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday in and around The Green and downtown - highlighted by the Dover Days Parade down State Street starting at 9:30 a.m.


Click here to get more information about Dover Days.


Kelli Steele has over 30 years of experience covering news in Delaware, Baltimore, Winchester, Virginia, Phoenix, Arizona and San Diego, California.