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Kalona Digitizing Residents’ History with First Community Scan Day


Kalona’s history could be sitting in your home waiting to be shared with the world.

The Kalona Community Heritage Project is asking residents of Kalona and smaller surrounding communities like Joetown and Frytown to bring documents including family and school photos, postcards, letters, and more for its first community scan day. The Kalona Public Library requests that the items date back prior to 1960, but they are also happy to help digitize other items of personal value. The documents will be electronically scanned and placed online for public viewing.

University of Iowa graduate student Laura Michelson has been working to digitize Kalona’s past, “History is told through things that families have and it’s not just in books or in a museum even, and so that’s what we’re trying to capture with the scan day. The Kalona project that I am with we are uploading items onto the Iowa Heritage Digital Collection and items that we scan on the scan day will be added to that collection and help us tell Kalona’s story to the world.”

Michelson estimates there are 600-700 images from Kalona already collected on the Iowa Heritage Digital Collection. The community scan day is this Saturday (4/21) at the Kalona Public Library. If you have items you’d like to digitize, RSVP to schedule an appointment by calling 319-656-3501.