Q & A with Governor’s House Library Intern Hunter Makin

Hunter Makin started as an intern at the Governor’s House Library during his Spring Semester 2022 at Flagler College. Makin calls the city of Winter Garden, Florida home during his summers and breaks, but Saint Augustine his second home during the school year. As a student at Flagler, Makin is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in History with a minor in Law. Makin was brought on as a student intern to work on a library guide for the University of Florida’s Historic Preservation Program. This library guide will be used by the program as a starting point while they research the various historic properties and restorations that deck the streets of Saint Augustine. The internship also allowed Makin to learn more about the archival process and learn to navigate both physical and digital archives and learn about what a career in the archival world looks like. In this blog post, Makin was asked a few questions about his experience as an intern at the Governor’s House Library and here were his responses.

Question: How were you drawn to this internship to begin with?

Answer: “I was drawn to this internship for two reasons. The first reason was that I was recommended personally by Professor Vigliotti, the Associate Director of Lifelong Learning & Corporate Training at Flagler College and the Flagler College Honors Program Coordinator. The second reason was because I have always wanted to learn more about the archival process and, I wanted to have the opportunity to really engage with the documents associated with the Historic Saint Augustine Preservation Board. So, in the end I not only was given the opportunity to engage with these documents which I was interested in, but I was also able to learn more about the archival process and some of the ins and outs of archival work.”

Question: What’s your work been like with the library?

Answer: “My work with the library has been great, I have learned a lot about how documents are stored and organized by being able to see them all firsthand and being able to go through them. I also have had the opportunity to read through some of the memos and look at a lot of the photos associated with the properties in a unique way.”

Question: What do you love most about your internship?

Answer: “What I love most about this internship is the little nuggets of information and fun facts that I get on a daily basis. Every day is a new adventure and opportunity to learn some new fact or discover something new about the Historic Preservation Board. One smaller aspect that I think I have enjoyed a lot, and one that is a little bit odder, has been simply holding old documents. I always find it be a surreal feeling when I pick up a document that someone else touched or typed decades ago. I also love seeing how things like simple communication used to be done, as someone born in 2002, I grew up with email and the internet. So, seeing physically typed out memos that would most certainly be emails today highlights how much has changed and it inspires yet another surreal feeling in me, it really shows how far we, as humans, have come.”

Question: What was the most challenging aspect?

Answer: “The most challenging aspect of this internship has honestly been deciding what should go in the library guide and what should be left out. This is because I find all the documents to be interesting and important, however, what would be the point of creating a library guide if I just listed all the documents. So, the hardest part for me was setting aside my desire to put every document in the guide and instead choosing only the most important documents for the guide.”

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