Summary
Collection ID:
Record Unit 600
Creators:
Smithsonian Institution,Visitor Information and Associates' Reception Center
Dates:
1972-1989
Languages:
English
Physical Description:
7.4 linear meters.
Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives

Introduction
Introduction
This finding aid was digitized with funds generously provided by the Smithsonian Institution Women's Committee.

Descriptive Entry
Descriptive Entry
These records document many aspects of the development and operation of VIARC, especially the administration of the Center's two volunteer corps. The bulk of the material consists of the administrative files of Mary Grace Potter from 1972 to 1987, including general correspondence, memoranda, and budget reports. Of particular note are early planning materials for the Smithsonian Information Center, which opened in the Castle in November 1989. In addition, the records contain the files of the Seven Day Information Service and the Staff, Volunteer, and Intern Services units from 1980 to 1989. These materials include memoranda, correspondence, reports, and surveys generated and received by the units.

Historical Note
Historical Note
In October 1971 Mary Grace Potter became the first Director of the Smithsonian Associates' Reception Center, which was established to accommodate members of the National Associate constituency that was created with the publication of Smithsonian magazine. Initial duties of the Center included reception and orientation services for National Associate members visiting the Institution, response to telephone and mail inquiries from members, membership sales, and management of the reduced rate membership and gift fulfillment program for employees and volunteers.
It soon became apparent that the organization provided services that would be valuable to the public as well as to National Associates, and by June 1975 it was renamed the Visitor Information and Associates' Reception Center (VIARC). The Center operated originally under the auspices of the National Program of the Smithsonian Associates, but by 1977 it had emerged as a separate entity reporting directly to the Assistant Secretary for Public Service. By 1989 the functions of VIARC were divided among five separate units: the Information Resources Division; Public Inquiry Mail and Telephone Information Services unit; the Seven Day Information Service unit; the Staff, Volunteer, and Intern Services unit; and Support Services.

Notes
SI Records

Using the Collection
Preferred Citation
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 600, Smithsonian Institution,Visitor Information and Associates' Reception Center, Records

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Potter, Mary Grace Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Visitor Information and Associates' Reception Center. Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Smithsonian Institution -- Administration. Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Visitor Information and Associates' Reception Center. Seven Day Information Service (VIARC) Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Visitor Information and Associates' Reception Center. Staff, Volunteer, and Intern Services (VIARC) Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Seven Day Information Service (VIARC) Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Smithsonian Information Center. Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Staff, Volunteer, and Intern Services (VIARC) Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
Smithsonian Institution Archives
Washington, D.C.
Contact us at osiaref@si.edu