Wanderground – What’s Next

Wanderground – What’s Next

Research Installment # Blog Post – March 31, 2022

logo RI Council for the humanities

This is the final installment summarizing the Wanderground research project funded by the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities. A warm thank you to the Council for their support – for both the funding and the staff involvement. And thanks to all who offered their time and wisdom and shared their experiences and responses. With your support, the progress of bringing Wanderground from vision to reality is now well on its way.

What are the next steps?

Forthcoming Exhibit:
From June through August 2022, I will be showcasing a broad range of Wanderground resources in display cases at the Providence Public Library (Rhode Island Room). The free exhibit will include: writings by RI Lesbians, early publications from independent Lesbian/feminist publishers, music and videos, art and artifacts and other life-affirming Lesbian legacies. Also from that venue, I will present a curator’s show-and-tell as part of their June Pride Month activities. I’ll be sure to send reminders as we get closer to the date.

Outlining a Structure:
Currently, I am participating in the Social Enterprise Greenhouse Incubator Program ( This opportunity provides valuable workshops, encouragement, and support in taking the next steps towards developing Wanderground. From now through the end of May, I will be drafting mission and vision statements, creating a business model and taking the steps to incorporate as a non-profit, as well as outlining costs, revenue, and fundraising strategies. This process will also include initiating some form of advisory council of Lesbian volunteers passionate about breathing life into Wanderground.

Another big step will be to look beyond Rhode Island. Though located I Rhode Island, Wanderground (as I have imagined it) was never intended to only focus on Lesbian activities in Rhode Island. I plan to promote Wanderground as a community-based Lesbian archive accessible in the New England region. The holdings will certainly feature Lesbians from Rhode Island (and New England) but will broadly include national and international materials as well.

Keeping You Informed:
I will periodically share news about our progress while continuing to gather, identify, catalog, label, and properly box Lesbian resources for longer-term archival purposes. In the meantime, this is the current draft of the Mission Statement.
Wanderground Lesbian Archive and Makerspace provides vibrant community gathering spaces to collect, preserve, and bring to life Lesbian activisms, artistic cultural expressions, and forgotten legacies. 

Were you unable to attend our March events?
These are the links to enjoy what you missed.

  • International Women’s Day, March 8, 2022
    A Peek into the Herstory of Lesbian Activities in Rhode Island through Archival Materials – PowerPoint Slides (only) / Full Video
  • Celebrate Rhode Island Lesbian Authors, Author reading March 27, 2022
    Readings by and discussions with by our very own Lesbian writers: Mari SanGiovanni, Linda Skibski, Elda Dawber, and Susan Joyce & Thea Ernest. The video recording is located here.

This is a listing of all the research summary blogs with topics and links:

  1. Research Participation: a summary of who participated in the research
  2. I Found My People: What were our first encounters with Lesbian publications and how they made us feel.
  3. Creating Communities & Activisms: Beyond publications, where else did we find other Lesbians? Where did we go to find ourselves and each other?  How was Lesbian/feminist organizing impacted by Lesbian artistic expression?
  4. Sisters Doing It for Ourselves: What did we create here in Rhode Island? Introducing RI authors, musicians, and some others….
  5. Who Needs Archives (and why the Name “Wanderground”)?: Are Lesbians in Rhode Island enthusiastic about an archive in RI? What can we learn from other Lesbian archives around the country?
  6. Do I Count?? How to Collect Your Life in Memorabilia: Information for how to save your own “stuff” – and why!
  7. Collaborations & Information Sharing: There are other LGBTQ collections in RI! How we can work together and complement each other?
  8. Wanderground – Bigger Visions for Space & Collections

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