Wartburg College was one of only 16 institutions awarded a Recordings at Risk grant through the Council on Library and Information Resources.

The $47,440 grant will allow the Wartburg College Archives and Archives of Iowa Broadcasting, which is owned by and housed at the college, to reformat 347 transcription discs of WHO-Des Moines radio broadcasts from 1938 to 1961. The audio from these transcriptions also will be made available online.

“The materials selected for this project include locally produced programs related to Iowa farming, children’s entertainment, sporting events, political speeches, special events like the Iowa State Fair and Iowa Centennial celebration and interviews with World War II soldiers by local reporters Herb Plambeck and Jack Shelly,” said Amy Moorman, the college’s archivist. “The WHO transcription discs represent some of the oldest and most fragile recordings in the holdings of the Archives of Iowa Broadcasting. We are thrilled to be able to preserve these materials with the help of the CLIR Recordings at Risk grant program.”

The grant project is expected to run from July 1 through March 31, 2019.

Recordings at Risk is a national regranting program administered by CLIR to support the preservation of rare and unique audio and audiovisual content of high scholarly value through digital reformatting. Awards from the open competitions range from $10,000 to $50,000 and cover costs of preservation reformatting for audio and/or audiovisual content by qualified external service providers. This is the program’s third grant cycle.