Is there still interest in a National Diary Archive?

Just wondering if there are people out there  who would like to help start this archive?  Particularly someone living near Fort Collins, Colorado.  We need to get the ball rolling, I won’t be around forever.  Donations of diaries and dollars would be helpful.  For now, my garage could be used for long term storage.  I may have space within my bookstore IF it ever reopens.  Please contact me at if you are interested.


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6 Responses to “Is there still interest in a National Diary Archive?”

  1. Michie Shaw Says:

    Hi, Cynthia: I would still like to donate my diaries but am not quite ready to do so. Also, I live in Northern Virginia. What would you like me to do? Michie


    • Cynthia Manuel Says:

      Hi Michie, Thanks for your immediate response. I will answer your question tonight when I will have more time.

      Are you going to try to answer the 36 questions? Please do!

      Regards, Cynthia


  2. chassismae Says:

    Hi Cynthia and other diarists,

    I think it is very important. I can’t remember how I came across your blog, but I remember you had done a lot of research to find an organization or institution that would house the archive. But you didn’t find any takers.

    When I imagine the archive, I see a large building with a full staff dedicated to preserving and growing the archive.

    I live in Tucson, Arizona, and worked at the museum that houses all the archeological documents and artifacts that have been found in AZ. It is Arizona law that it shall all be kept “in perpetuity.” In other words, forever. The archive would be a priceless collection and resource if perpetuity were part of its mission.

    I’d like to do further research to find out how other large and growing collections (which I believe we want) were started and how they approached the public and private sources of funding that they needed.

    I’d just do some looking around to start. I have a couple of friends who have been librarians and one who was exec. dir. for a nonprofit. They could give me a jump start.

    I’m not exactly how much help I can be. I can talk the talk–I also have a disability that has depleted my organizational skills. I do love searches though.

    As a friend of mine would say, “Cynthia, you are the glue!” Which means you’re the glue that holds it all together!

    (P.S. It’s going to take more time to answer the 36 questions. My computer is dust and I’m writing all this on my ph. I’ll check in soon.)


    • Cynthia Manuel Says:

      Heidi, Thanks for your immediate response. I have begun working on the National Diary Archive once more. My bookstore had to close in October and now I have more time…however, the bookstore may re-open so I’m trying to make fast progress on the archive. Hope to contact a lawyer this week about making it a non-profit. Still no one to join me in the work. I know several people who would donate their diaries IF we had a non-profit up and running.

      I share your vision of a large building filled with diaries from all over the US and a staff!

      Please do answer the 36 questions. I’d love to hear your story. More later, Cynthia


  3. JB Says:

    I think that this project is an immensely important one. I’ve kept a daily journal for the past two and a half years (plus a few very limited sporadic entries throughout the years prior to that), and my intention is to do so throughout the rest of my life (which, God willing, will not be closing for a number of decades). When that time comes, I’d be very hopeful that there’d be a diary archive willing to accept a copy of the whole collection. I only wished I didn’t live across the country from Fort Collins! But I am taking the “What You Can Do to Support a National Diary Archive” post to heart.

    As things stand now, what looks to be the next step toward the formal establishment of the archive?

    Oh, and congratulations on the re-opening of your bookstore at a new location!


    • Cynthia Manuel Says:

      Thanks, JB! I need to post some pictures of the new store. ( I think I like it better than the old location, though I miss gazing across the room at my favorite painting of Don Quixote. Monty-cat has settled in just fine and is back on the job as the gregarious cat that he is, uplifting those who need some “lovin'” and “assisting customers with selecting books.

      I wish you a long life of writing! You might enjoy A Diary of the Century by Edward Robb Ellis. I wrote a blog on him once. He kept a diary about 70 years. Mine is 50 years, but only takes up a couple of shelves. Some years were skimpy.

      The next step for the archive would be for me to think of some way to get funding. Maybe a grant writer will come my direction. Or a lawyer who would work for free. I am thinking of journal workshops for the fall and that provides a little bit of advertising/promotion.

      Of course, a return to blogging on this site might help.


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