An official website of Arlington County Government

New Center for Local History Goes Viral

Preserving Arlington’s Story Makes 21st Century Strides

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We’ve received great encouragement regarding the newly named, recently (re)opened Center for Local History at Arlington Public Library (formerly the Virginia Room).

And the Arlington Mercury news blog has captured in video form the direction in which the Center is headed.

We hope you’ll stop by soon or maybe bring us some memories to be digitized.

Your story is our story.


Comments (2)

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  1. JimH says:

    I’m sorry to say that I think the old name was much more distinctive. The name change just means that it sounds like every other local history collection in any library anywhere.

    • Center for Local History Staff says:

      Thanks for your comment.

      We don’t take change lightly in the preservation business, but our former name had some flaws. Fairfax County Public Library and Roanoke Public Library also use “Virginia Room”, which has long caused confusion. We also get calls weekly from people who assume the “Virginia Room” is just a bookable meeting room. But most importantly, our mission is specific to Arlington, not Virginia, and the old name was misleading on this point.

      “The Center for Local History at Arlington Public Library” is straightforward, if not fancy. It achieves our goal of making who we are and what we do very clear. We also hope this will help our collections be discovered by new users. We know from search logs that “Arlington History” is the most common phrase people search to find our information online – two words that were not in our old name.

      Our space at Central Library is simply known as the “Research Room” for now, but we’re not ruling out a more distinctive name for this space in the future. Stay tuned!

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