Like Lynn Nelson, Susan has asked me to write something for this birthday issue of Voices, but I don't really know what to say. The past two years have been full of positive changes for EKIS and the Kansas Collection. Both have grown through the efforts of the volunteers and contributors who give so freely of their time and materials to help preserve and present history for people all over the world.
The efforts of Bonnie, John, Bob, and the other volunteers have made a great success of Cutler's History of the State of Kansas. This huge endeavor has inspired a similar effort for Nebraska, and now we learn someone is beginning a South Dakota project -- all because they showed the world-wide web their fine accomplishments.
Connie Snyder is doing a wonderful job with Andreas' History of the State of Nebraska, another EKIS project that is also moving right along.
Susan Chaffin has been writing interesting and informative articles for our online magazine Voices and is now also serving as associate manager for acquisitions, working with our many contributors.
From the very first, our contributors and volunteers have been the strength of EKIS. Bonnie Bunce had the idea of putting Cutler's History of the State of Kansas online, and organized the volunteers to do it. John Matthews appeared out of the blue and simply started doing whatever needed to be done to place the completed texts online. Volunteers such as Lee Weller and Barbara Rentenbach worked diligently at typing in the small text of the original book, and contributed other work as well.
I want to mention the excellent contribution Susan Stafford has made. Her skills and talents have improved the “look and feel” and content of the Kansas Collection to a much higher level than ever. While very capably managing the Kansas Collection and enabling others, she also coordinates a wide range of EKIS activities with all the contributors. Susan recently introduced a wonderful new feature called “Voices,” an electronic magazine highlighting various subjects and contributors. Susan has also produced numerous articles for the Kansas Collection.
Today we are still blessed with energetic and capable volunteers, and generous contributors. Thanks to all of you for your hard work and donations, and to those of you who are visiting our sites, welcome! I hope you enjoy learning more about Kansas history and people, and finding a place where materials that otherwise would be lost are carefully preserved for all of us to access.
12 July 1997.