Searching for sources, cataloguing and securing them
To document the importance and diversity of the agri-food sector in the 19th and 20th centuries, we maintain contacts with several hundred organizations, institutions, and individuals who hold archival material. We are actively searching for source material (minutes, letters, reports, etc. in paper or electronic form, as well as visual and audio recordings) to cover as many fields of activities as possible. So far, we have located, secured, indexed and deposited archival material from more than two hundred record creators, amounting to approximately two linear kilometres catalogued sources.
Cataloguing archival materials
Cataloguing archival records means evaluating and arranging them so that they can be properly stored and used for research purposes in the future. The documents are arranged and recorded in files and stored in acid-free archive boxes. The electronic records are converted into file formats suitable for their long-term storage.
The evaluation (decision on archival value) is based on historical expertise and is carried out in close cooperation with the creators of the records, i.e. the institutions that produced the records or have them at their disposal.
More and more record keepers are recognizing the importance of transparent record keeping and information management for their business activities. In cooperation with them, we develop filing systems, organizational regulations and process manuals, implement these technically and organisationally and select the records worthy of archiving in electronic and/or paper form. In addition, we advise the file creators on legal issues regarding the archiving of documents. By working closely with the file creators, we create a basis for the storage of documents worthy of archiving in the future.
Archive directories, portals
The database “Quellen zur Agrargeschichte” contains the distortion data of all archival holdings the Archives of Rural History has catalogued. We publish the distortion data on Archives Portal Europe APE as well.