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Visionary Archives – May 20-23, 2020

Visionary Archives perform their work through new and innovative ways by seeing the interconnectedness of the archives profession to our larger society. Unrestricted by gatekeepers, Visionary Archives work hand in hand with allied professionals and community members to find creative solutions to today’s most challenging archival issues. How do we preserve the records of today, while also working to bridge the digital divide that makes so much of our history virtually inaccessible? Visionary Archives inspire bold action, and empower us to see a future where archives help to make the world a better place.

Denton, Texas, host city to the 2020 Society of Southwest Archivists Conference, has a long history of fostering visionary art, action and leadership that will inspire and entertain conference attendees. 

  • Denton surprised the world in 2014 when they city successfully voted to ban fracking inside the city limits. While the city was forced to overturn their ban by the state the following year, the grass-roots activism of Denton continues and is an inspiration to environmental activists around the world. 
  • The historic downtown Denton Square features many local and independent businesses, including Recycled Books, a three story smorgasbord of books and music, filled with quirky treasures, such as a shelf of books for only tall people and a section in the basement for books on pirates, treasure and disasters at sea.
  • While you are downtown, find your way to the unmarked door leading to Paschall Bar, an old-fashioned cocktail parlor with a literary theme.
  • Education has been instrumental in shaping the history of Denton. The city is home to two large public universities with a combined enrollment of over 52,000 students: the University of North Texas, established in 1890; and Texas Woman’s University, established in 1903.
  • Denton was the long-time home of architect O’Neil Ford, and many iconic O’Neil Ford buildings are located throughout the city. Ford is known for merging European modernism with the indigenous qualities of early Texas architecture, and using materials such as handmade bricks and hand carved doors.
  • KUZU 92.9 is a low-power radio station which has been broadcasting to the Denton Community since 2017. KUZU (operated by a non-profit organization) is a public forum for artistic expression, music, debate and local affairs.