Archives are a major resource for primary documents. Archives web sites can be used to identify and locate documents and many now include downloadable documents and virtual exhibits. This electronic access has made it much easier to consult archival holdings worldwide, but the unique nature of those archive materials not yet digitized makes them difficult to obtain. Most archival materials must be consulted on-site at the archives where they are held or copied/microfilmed and mailed to you by archives staff – sometimes an expensive and time-consuming request.
You can use the suggestions in this guide to aid you in locating archival materials. If you are unsure about how to physically locate an item you have found using one of the following resources, please consult with library staff. We will be happy to assist you.
Since subject headings used for archives catalogues may vary according to their content, the easiest way to find library holdings of printed lists of archive holdings is a keyword search that includes the following terms:
(CATALOG* OR INDEX*) AND s:ARCHIV*
This search will instruct the catalogue to look for a variety of keywords relating to catalogues or indexes and then to search the Library of Congress subject headings for a term related to archival materials.