The Women’s March on Washington Archives Project, spearheaded by Danielle Russell, Southern Maryland Studies Center and Katrina Vandeven, MLIS candidate at University of Denver is comprised of a group of archivists from the SAA Women Archivists Section who saw the social and political importance of the January 21, 2017 Women’s Marches and wanted to make sure that women’s voices and concerns about the impending Trump presidency were preserved and that the movement’s particular brand of grassroots activism was effectively documented.
The Women’s Marches held worldwide advocated not only for women’s rights, but also immigration reform, healthcare reform, the natural environment, LGBTQ rights, racial equality, freedom of religion, and workers’ rights. The first planned protest was in Washington, D.C., and according to organizers it was meant to “send a bold message to our new administration on their first day in office, and to the world that women’s rights are human rights.” The collective Women’s Marches are reported to be the largest single-day demonstration in U.S. history; the Washington march drew at least 500,000 people, and worldwide participation has been estimated at five million.
In Austin, Texas, the number of marchers was estimated at 50,000, and archivists from the School of Information, or iSchool, at the University of Texas were there. Leading the charge for the collection and archiving of oral histories, digital assets (websites, Tweets, Facebook posts, etc.), photos, and signs are graduate students David Bliss and Grace Hansen. Some of the physical materials they are collecting will be housed at the Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, while digital materials will become a part of the national repository. The end goal is to have a digital platform that will allow cohesive research.
Huffington Post also published a list of archiving endeavors across the country.