With more than 3,000 visitors annually and more than a century worth of genealogical and historical information, the SullivanMunce Cultural Center on West Hawthorne Street is free for Zionsville residents to come get a bit of history.

The center is now asking for $10,000 from the Zionsville Town Council  in order to continue working at a high standard.

At the council agenda setting meeting Monday, July 25, SullivanMunce Executive Director Janet Baker spoke on behalf of the center.

If awarded, this money would go toward digitizing hundreds of the center’s microfilm slides. The center’s microfilm reader broke earlier this year. Baker said that repairing the microfilm reader is not possible, since parts for the machine are no longer being manufactured.

This was a request of councilwoman Candace Ulmer, who said the town loses a valuable asset if there is no access to the microfilms.

“I think (the center) could really use our help in this venture,” Ulmer said.

Ulmer said the microfilm reader was the only way for people to access copies of old newspapers and documents.

She said the option that most museums and cultural centers are taking now is that of digitizing all of their film.

“It would highly improve the level of accessibility,” Baker said. “We can work to make the entire process of research almost paperless.”

Workers at the SullivanMunce Cultural Center will introduce its request at the regular council meeting 7 p.m. Monday, Aug. 1. A public hearing will follow.

Also at the meeting, council members will review the town’s legal and litigation fees for the year.

The total amount being petitioned for monetary appropriation is $77,000.

“This is a normal fee,” said Town Manager Ed Mitro. “And it is simply to replenish a line item that was removed last year regarding the appropriation of legal fees.”

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