Sifting through and digitizing decades worth of archival material might sound tedious and, well, a little boring.

Not so for Alan Renga.

"It was fun," said Renga, who was hired to help complete the organizational effort by the German Village Society. "It was interesting."

Renga recently completed his portion of the work he began 18 months ago. During that time he said he spent about 12 months digitizing, cataloging and organizing boxes of historical data and artifacts into electronic formats.

"I was impressed how interconnected the community was," Renga said. "And the families did a good job of documenting their roots back to Germany."

Renga said he enjoyed "learning about the past and preserving it."

"Now, it's easily shared through digitization and the (society) website, making it more accessible," he said.

Renga, 44, said portions of the job were monotonous.

"Like every job, it can get repetitive, like scanning things," he said, adding he was fortunate to have some interns helping him along the way.

Renga, an archivist for the San Diego Air & Space Museum, was paid $17,500 for his work. The money came from Tea 43206, an annual fundraiser for historic preservation, and German Village Society operating funds, said Shiloh Todorov, executive director of the society.

Todorov said the information is useful both for neighbors and those who are helping complete the interpretive trail and amendment to the National Register of Historic Places, two projects spearheaded by the society.

The digitization of 57 years' worth of material was initiated in 2013 by Russ Arledge, a former society staff member, Todorov said.

"The thing that we need to continue on with down the road is documentation of our current listings and continue to be a place people want to donate a few items to a year," she said.

gseman@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekGary