In a joint statement issued today, the Hoover Institution and the Polish State Archives announced an agreement to undertake a project to index and make accessible to scholars the Polish broadcasts of Radio Free Europe (RFE). The RFE Polish programs, broadcast between 1952 and 1994, consist of more than 17,000 audio recordings and 1.5 million pages of transcripts.
Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) donated its corporate records and its entire broadcast archives, including the Polish broadcasts, to the Hoover Institution. At the same time, RFE/RL permitted the Polish State Archives to make copies of the Polish broadcasts for its holdings. To avoid a duplication of effort, the Hoover Institution and the Polish State Archives have joined together to produce a computer-based index to the two collections. The Hoover Institution will provide funds totaling $120,000 over five years. The Polish State Archives will contribute working facilities, support staff, computer hardware and software, utilities, and overhead.
This joint project represents the latest development in a continuing, cooperative relationship between the Hoover Institution and the Polish State Archives. Last year, the Hoover Institution completed a large-scale preservation project of its Polish archival collections, made possible by grants from the Taube Family Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities. As part of this effort, the Hoover Institution donated to the Polish State Archives microfilms of eighteen collections, about one and half million pages of documents, representing the bulk of the Hoover Institution's archival holdings on Poland. The two institutions have also established an exchange agreement, which resulted in the exchange of additional materials, including microfilm copies of records of the Polish Communist Party Central Committee presented to the Hoover Institution by the Polish State Archives.
"I continue to be impressed by the dedication of the Polish people to document the communist period in their history," said Hoover Institution director John Raisian. "We are delighted to continue our association with the Polish State Archives to collaborate on this venture."
The Government of Poland recognized the Hoover Institution's contribution to the Polish archival preservation by honoring Tad Taube with a special presentation at the Foreign Ministry in 1999, and Associate Director and Archivist Elena Danielson and Curator Maciej Siekierski with Laurel Awards in 2001. Taube is a member of the Board of Overseers of the Hoover Institution and the Polish RFE broadcasts at the Hoover Institution constitute the Taube Family Collection on Poland.