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News from NEDCC
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DIMES FOR THE CONSTITUTION - LOTS OF THEM! -  Oregon Citizens Crowdfund Conservation Treatment and Digitization of the State's 1857 Constitution  
   
When Mary Beth Herkert came to work at the Oregon State Archives in 1984, the state had just finished a "penny drive" to fund the re-guilding of the Oregon Pioneer (the Gold Man) that sits atop the Oregon State Capitol building in Salem.  School children gathered pennies and raised $37,000 toward the effort.    

Herkert thought, "Why can't we do that for the preservation of the state's constitution?" She figured that if every student in Oregon contributed ten cents, they could raise enough money for conservation of the founding document.   

In 2014, the "Dimes for the Constitution" effort was launched by then Secretary of State Kate Brown, and the pitch to Oregon students to contribute coins yielded about $7,000. When the new Secretary of State Dennis Richardson was elected in November 2016, he asked Ms. Herkert what she would like to accomplish for the State Archives.      

"No question," she said, "we'd like to have conservation treatment of the Constitution completed and two cases built, one for the State Archives, and one for the State Capitol, so Oregon citizens could have the experience of viewing the document - their document - in person."     

Herkert felt strongly that Oregon citizens should have the opportunity to engage in civic involvement and pride. They stepped up their efforts and sent out the call to all citizens.  "We took in dollars - we took in coins. We didn't care!"      

READ MORE about the successful citizen-based crowdfunding initiative for the preservation of this significant manuscript, and view detailed photos of the conservation treatment:   https://www.nedcc.org/about/nedcc-stories/or-constitution    

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Julie Martin
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