Memory Lab @ Odenton Library

Memory lab conversion equipment.

The Memory lab at Odenton Library provides equipment for digitizing home movies, phonograph records, and scanning photographs, negatives, slides and audio cassettes.


How It Works

  • Call the Odenton library at (410) 222-6277 to schedule a one-on-one appointment with a librarian.
  • We’ll train you on the equipment of your choice. You’ll sign a release form, receive a certificate, and be authorized to use that equipment on your own.  
  • After you have completed your training session, schedule your work session. You may book a piece of equipment for 2 hours at a time.  Arrive for your work session and check-in at the adult information desk. We'll set up the equipment for you and you'll work on your project independently. 

What To Bring


  • VHS cassettes
  • Photos
  • Slides
  • Negatives
  • Phonograph record
  • Audio cassette

Methods Of Saving

  • External hard drive
  • USB flash drive
  • Cloud Storage (Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, and others)

Personal Archiving Quick Tips

Take Care Of Your Physical Stuff

  • Handle with care! Use clean hands, keep away from food, and do not use paperclips, staples, rubber bands, or adhesives.
  • Store in a cool, dry, and dark place where materials could come in contact with direct sunlight, moisture, pests, or temperature extremes. Think: a bedroom closet, not in the basement or attic.
  • Use acid-free storage, store flat whenever possible.

Take Care Of Your Digital Stuff

  • Label files with consistent and descriptive file names and an organized folder directory. A good file name should include the date in YYYYMMDD format and the name of the event (ex: 20100913ophelia_wedding-001.jpg)
  • Save in non-proprietary file types (ex: pdf, tiff, jpg, mov).
  • Store files in three geographic locations (ex: laptop, external hard drive, the cloud)

Our Story

In 2017, the Division of Library Development and Services of the Maryland State Department of Education awarded the Odenton Library a grant to build an Innovation Lab, which was matched by the Anne Arundel County Repair and Renovation Funds. We closed off the room and added power and data to enhance the space for makerspace activities. This space is now known as our Creation Station. With funds generously donated to the Library Foundation, we acquired a 3D printer, sewing machines, and design tools to use in library programs. We also wanted to incorporate a meaningful addition for our customers, who we know to be interested in genealogy, storytelling, and history. Inspired by the DC Public Library’s Memory Lab, we decided to create our own.