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July 27, 2007

Butler named director of CW's archives and records department

Rosanne Butler has been named director of Colonial Williamsburg’s archives and records department. In this position, she oversees archival and records management operations for the Foundation. She reports to John Bacon, Colonial Williamsburg’s senior vice president for external affairs.

Her responsibilities focus on oversight of the Foundation’s archival collection (3,000 cubic feet of paper records, 900,000 electronic document images and 2,000 rolls of microfilm) stored in the Foundation’s administrative offices building; directing the Foundation’s records management program including records appraisal and scheduling; and managing the records center (10,000 cubic feet of records) at Packet’s Court Warehouse on Route 60. She also supervises the oral history program that involves interviewing past employees and associates about their experiences at Colonial Williamsburg and recording the information for permanent retention in the archives. She supervises three full-time employees, three part-time employees and seven volunteers.

Butler began her association with Colonial Williamsburg as a volunteer in archives and records in 1999 and subsequently became a part-time employee. One of her projects at that time involved helping to catalog Dr. W.A.R. Goodwin’s personal papers, which are held by the archives. A database was created to catalog the 15,000 items in the collection from Colonial Williamsburg’s co-founder.

Prior to joining the Foundation, Butler worked at the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration offices in Washington, D.C., for 26 years. She served as a staff archivist and as a records appraisal liaison between the National Archives and other government agencies, including the Department of Agriculture, the Tennessee Valley Authority and the Panama Canal Commission. For 15 years, Butler served as an administrator overseeing operation of the National Archives’ regional archival facilities in 13 states.

Butler also has worked as a researcher and editorial assistant for author Richard Brady Williams on two books about the Civil War.

Butler earned a bachelor’s degree in American history from George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., and a master’s degree in American history from the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.

She is a member of ARMA International, the Society of American Archivists, the Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference and the Williamsburg Historic Records Association.

Her husband, Stuart Lee Butler, also is a professional archivist who retired from the National Archives. Their daughter, Elisabeth, graduated from the College of William and Mary, and now works as an archivist for a U.S. Senate Committee in Washington, D.C.

Established in 1926, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is the not-for-profit educational institution that preserves and operates the restored 18th-century Revolutionary capital of Virginia as a town-sized living history museum, telling the inspirational stories of our nation’s founding men and women. Within the restored and reconstructed buildings, historic interpreters, attired as colonial men and women from slaves to shopkeepers to soldiers, relate stories of colonial Virginia society and culture — stories of our journey to become Americans – while historic tradespeople research, demonstrate and preserve the 18th-century world of work and industry. As Colonial Williamsburg interprets life in the time of the American Revolution for its guests, it also invites them to interact with history. Williamsburg is located 150 miles south of Washington, D.C., off Interstate 64. For more information or reservations, call toll-free 1-800-HISTORY or visit Colonial Williamsburg on the Internet at

Media Contact:
Penna Rogers
(757) 220-7121