The Sevier County Government Preservation of Records Department is finally a reality. The department’s creation began in Fall of 1999 when Information Management Associates, Inc. was hired to conduct a records management needs assessment of the courthouse offices. Mrs. Linda W. Clark, CRM (certified records manager), a Senior Consultant with IMA, Inc. conducted the assessment through personal interviews with elected officials and their staff and by touring the file storage areas within the courthouse. The end result of the assessment was a report outlining the county’s records management needs and listing recommendations to correct the problems found. Clark was then asked to continue working with the county to correct the records problems identified in the needs assessment report and to create a
combined records management and archives program for Sevier County Government.
Due to the volume of records already accumulated and the continuing creation of records, the courthouse did not have ample storage space nor was it environmentally equipped for proper records storage. Therefore, a new facility had to be found or created in order to house the permanent and non-permanent records of county government. In 2001 Mr. Jimmy Temple, owner of Temple Seed and Feed and a Sevier County Commissioner, announced that his store would be closing and offered county government the opportunity to purchase the property. The location of Mr. Temple’s property, directly across Bruce Street from the courthouse, was a perfect location for the new Preservation of Records Department. The county purchased the property and began renovating Mr. Temple’s feed warehouse, located in the right hand corner of the property, to be the home of the newly created Preservation of Records Department. Mr. Temple’s main store building was renovated for use by the Sheriff’s department.
Mr. Brad Cannon, formerly of the Knox County Archives, was hired as the department’s Director in February 2001. He immediately began work in the courthouse Bell Tower because it had been used as a records dumping ground by county offices for years. He organized many records during his first year and anxiously awaited having a real office and a proper records storage facility. Cannon was able to move into his new facility in March 2002. The building is temperature controlled for the proper care of documents and has enough space to house approximately 10,000 cubic feet of records.
The department is not yet open to the public. The department will not be servicing the public until sometime next year due to the fact that Mr. Cannon is the only full-time employee. He currently has one part-time employee and hopes to add another in the future. For now, patrons will continue to request records from the owning office and if the item has been sent to storage, the owning office will request the file for them. This new department has a great deal of work ahead. It will be an asset to the entire community and play a very important role in the preservation of Sevier County’s documented history.

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