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CSUDH Library Blog

Documenting COVID-19 Digital Collection and Finding Aid Now Online

by Archives Department on 2021-01-08T11:04:00-08:00 in Archives & Special Collections | Comments

In April 2020, the Gerth Archives and Special Collections began collecting submissions that reflect the experiences of the CSUDH and Southern Los Angeles County community during the COVID-19 pandemic. The project received 126 items between April-December 2020, which were cataloged by Marissa Chavez, a Master of Library and Information Science candidate at the UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies. The collection can be viewed in the Gerth Archives Digital Collections database, and a finding aid describing the physical collection can be viewed in the Online Archive of California (OAC). The collection includes 61 diaries (.pdf), 16 blog posts (.pdf), 88 photographs (.jpg), 3 videos (.mov), 1 sound recording (.mp3), 4 works of art (.pdf), 3 periodicals (.pdf), and two boxes of Daily Breeze newspaper articles as of December 2020.

Diaries written as assignments for various classes focus on students' experience with online learning, quarantine with their families, being an essential worker during the pandemic, and other changes to their daily lives as a result of COVID-19. Photographs depict changes to local stores, public gathering places, and signage. Many photographs show people wearing masks, social distancing, and the closures of beaches and parks.

Residents of LA County in line at Sprits Natural Food store wearing face coverings and social distancing. Renteria, Eduardo. “Struggles during Quarantine” photograph. Spc_cov_004. Documenting COVID-19 Collection, Gerth Archives and Special Collections, CSU Dominguez Hills. URL: 

Videos show short clips of what interactions look like at a distance. Blog posts by local community members chronicle events and changes to daily life during quarantine. Periodicals include a study of CSUDH students and their stress and wellbeing during quarantine. A sound recording of an interview presents one Latinx resident's thoughts on why some do not wear masks in their building. Artwork includes a coloring book created by the Queer Culture and Resource Center and student collages.

Digital drawing of a Latinx nurse with glasses and a face mask surrounded by flowers, rays of light, and text "Nurses are the real heroes."

Olivares, Jacqueline. "A nurse's artwork" image. Spc_cov_008. Documenting COVID-19 Collection, Gerth Archives and Special Collections, CSU Dominguez Hills. URL:

The Gerth Archives and Special Collections is glad for the opportunity to help CSUDH community members share their stories and will continue to receive submissions to the collection through 2021. Learn more about the project and how to get involved. 

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