|Fire at the original BAM building on Montague Street in Brooklyn Heights|
The need for a formal BAM Archives was first identified in 1995 when a search for records, photographs and other materials revealed that items of historical value were scatted in various locations thought out BAM buildings and New York City and in serious danger of being lost forever. Construction at BAM in 1996 uncovered more forgotten boxes and in 1997 the Brooklyn Public Library gave the Archives materials dating back to the Civil War.
I have seen lots of power point presentations at archives conferences picturing messy file cabinets and scary mold. Check out the BAM Archives before and after shots of boxes containing playbills, programs :
|Before: 2004 BAM Archives 16th floor in the |
former Williamsburg Bank Building
|After: Now, Playbills and Programs 1857-Present|
In 2005 the collections were moved into the former Salvation Army Building currently under construction and known as the Fisher Building. A BAM committee is reviewing plans for a new state-of-the art physical home for the BAM Hamm Archives Center funded by none other than Charles and Irene Hamm. Follow this link to listen to some of the oral history taken with Charles Hamm conducted by the very wonderful Brooklyn Historical Society.