Perspective: Naples Historical Society to unveil new research center

NAPLES HISTORICAL SOCIETY 
 Ellen Fischer, left, program coordinator, and  Dottie Giles, museum coordinator, at a work station in the new Archive Viewing Center.

NAPLES HISTORICAL SOCIETY Ellen Fischer, left, program coordinator, and Dottie Giles, museum coordinator, at a work station in the new Archive Viewing Center.

The converted servants' cottage is only steps away from Palm Cottage and amid its gardens.

The converted servants' cottage is only steps away from Palm Cottage and amid its gardens.

The mission of the Naples Historical Society is to “preserve Naples history and heritage for the community and future generations to enjoy.’’

The society is living up to that this week with the dedication of a new feature at its landmark headquarters, Palm Cottage, which is listed in the National Register of Historic Places at 137 12th Ave. S. east of Naples Pier.

In a former servants quarters the society will open its Archival Viewing Center, where members and visitors can digitally access the society’s vast archives, including documents, photos and artifacts collected for decades.

For the past year, society staff and volunteers have scanned and filed archives that will be accessible — for the first time in any form — by keywords on computers in the remodeled quarters to the rear of Palm Cottage.

So, for the same price of memnership or admission, guests can tour Palm Cottage and stroll the gardens as well as see historic films in a mini-theater dedicated in 2010 and now research data available nowhere else.

The society takes the opportunity for a well-timed appeal: “If you have cherished photos and documents relevant to Naples’ development, during any time period, now is the time to ask us to protect the images for

perpetuity and for greater community enjoyment and learning. It takes a community to preserve

one.’’

The Archival Viewing Center will open with a free, public ribbon-cutting ceremony sponsored by the Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce at noon on Tuesday.

Admission to all that Palm Cottage has to offer will be half-price for that day from 1 to 4 p.m. At other times admission is $10 per person; members are free and so are children 10 and under.

For more information, visit www.NaplesHistoricalSociety.org or call 239-261-8164.

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