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Grassroots Activism and the American Wilderness: Pioneers in the Twentieth Century Adirondack Park Conservation Movement project at Union College: Description and Cataloging

Council on Library and Information Resources grant-funded project at Union College


A unique and exciting component of this project is the use of the newest technology in archives management: ArchivesSpace. This cutting-edge tool will assist with efficient processing and enable the creation of finding aids for online discovery of the collections. ArchivesSpace will be utilized to input all information throughout the processing work and it will be used to describe the digital surrogates of selected items found in the collections. The project team has customized the software for its needs to describe the collections using terms from standardized vocabularies that provide access to all of the researching audiences we wish to serve. 

Another way that ArchivesSpace will be used for the collections of this project will be to track items that are in need of significant conservation intervention. The funding from the grant that was received is intended for cataloging only, with only minimal preservation efforts applied to the materials, such as rehousing materials into acid-free containers. Therefore, as the processing is completed, notations into ArchivesSpace regarding potential conservation efforts will be indicated for future assessment. 

Describing with Controlled Vocabularies

Important goals of this project will be to describe the collections' contents for use by not only Union College faculty and students, but also for the world-wide researching public. In addition, this project will use terms recommended by New York Heritage to provide access to students in the K-12 age range, and utilize the themes created by the New York State Archives to Document Environmental Affairs in New York State. To accomplish these goals, various descriptive terms will be employed to reach these distinct audiences. There is much in each collection to be studied for all of these researchers.