Lizeth Ramirez
Lizeth Ramirez

Archivist Lizeth Ramirez says she has learned a great deal about Orange history since starting work at the City’s main library 11 years ago.  She will participate in “Orange County Archives in Action” November 3, 2018 at Bowers Museum.

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Ace Archivist
Librarian helps people make exciting discoveries.

Ever since Orange opened its sparkling new main library in 2007, one of its most prized features has been the Orange History Center.  Housed on the second floor, it is a treasure trove of historical documents, publications and photographs that help tell the story of the City.

As the center’s archivist and reference librarian, Lizeth Ramirez guides people through this rich maze of materials.  Enthusiastic visitors come to learn more about the history of their Old Towne home or to research family heritage or city events and traditions.

Doing historical research, says Ramirez, feels like you’re “doing detective work sometimes.  When people come in with really good research questions, it’s fun to actually help them find the items,” she says, “especially when they suddenly discover something big—that ‘Eureka’ moment.”

Irma Hernandez, retired Deputy City Manager for Orange, is among those who praise Ramirez’s skills.  “Working in the Mayor’s office for close to 20 years and for four different mayors, it was pivotal to me to have accurate information, especially about the City’s history,” says Hernandez, noting that Ramirez always went the extra mile to help her get what she needed.

“Lizeth is so passionate about what she does, and it shows in all her assignments,” adds Hernandez.

Technology has been a great tool for the History Center, notes Ramirez.  Much of its materials, including copies of old local newspapers, have been digitized, enabling people to access them online.  She says the library hopes to one day digitize local high school yearbooks from the past—many of which line the shelves of a large glass case in the center.

Ramirez loves working with community history organizations such as the Old Towne Preservation District, the Orange Community Historical Society and the Orange Barrio Historical Society.  (She is a Board member of the latter two groups.)

She is also involved in the launch of an event called “Orange County Archives in Action.”  To be held November 3 at the Bowers Museum in Santa Ana, the program will feature materials from library archives in the area, such as those at Chapman University, California State University, Fullerton and the City of Anaheim.

One benefit of being an archivist, says Ramirez, is that when you help people research history, you learn history as well.

“I didn’t grow up here, but I’ve been at the library for 11 years now, so I’ve had the chance to learn a lot about the City of Orange.”

(Lizeth departed her role with the City of Orange in 2021.)

Orange History Center
407 East Chapman Ave, Orange CA 92866  /  714-288-2465

Article Published in the
Sep / Oct 18 edition of the Old Towne Orange Plaza Review
Written by Paul Sterman Photo by Jeanine Hill
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