In the Spirit: Five Tips for Preserving Family Heirlooms

In the Spirit: Five Tips for Preserving Family Heirlooms

In the spirit of keeping it real, I'm sending readers a handy cheat sheet, Five Tips for Preserving Family Heirlooms, to shine a little light during a time that can be emotional for us all. "Real" is the key word, because as much as our lives are digital, the tangible world—the real—excites us and connects us as humans.

Gift Guide for Family Archivists

Gift Guide for Family Archivists

A gift that celebrates memories is so much more than a present. An occasion for gift giving--the holidays, a birthday, an anniversary--is all about the experience. And everything's better when you enjoy it together. 

Here's a list of distinctive gifts for everyone on your nice list. The ties that bind these gifts together is that they cherish the past or create the future.

Identifying Worthwhile Archival Projects

Identifying Worthwhile Archival Projects

The most vital aspect of managing a successful archival project is identifying the right problem to be solved. In the cultural heritage sector, too many excellent exciting projects exist, but limited resources hamper seeing them to fruition. Archivists should prioritize projects that add value to the organization.

Projects should reduce costs, expand services, or increase efficiency—and be linked to these objectives from start to finish. Archivists must change their mindset from simply completing a project to strategically implementing the project with business objectives in mind.

Archives Collection-Level Description: Pros & Cons

Archives Collection-Level Description: Pros & Cons

Although some archivists debate the necessity for item-level access, it is often more challenging to describe images in the aggregate. Collection-level description can be useful for images of the same subject, but problematic for collections with a variety of subjects, as it neither improves retrieval nor limits the handling of the originals. Group arrangement and description are necessary for large collections or when resources are limited.

Archives & Item-Level Description: An Integrated Approach

Archives & Item-Level Description: An Integrated Approach

Traditionally, archivists have dismissed arrangement at the item level as having little utility and being impractical for modern collections. However, archival surveys conducted over the years have found that a significant proportion of archivists have adhered to item-level description—even though it is contrary to the traditional archival practice of collection-level description. The same discrepancy between literature and practice appears to be true for visual collections.