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Expanded Guide to DRT Library Archival Collections Now Available Online

April 7, 2010

As of this entry, the “Inside the Gates” blog includes digital images of several hundred items from the DRT Library’s holdings; the majority of these items are documents, photographs, or ephemera from its archival collections. While the blog represents a sizable digital collection, it highlights only a tiny fraction of the library’s entire physical archive, which is comprised of approximately 450 collections ranging in size from a single document to several thousand items.

Conducting research in archives and navigating such extensive archival holdings can be daunting and confusing. To assist researchers in these endeavors, the DRT Library’s website features a recently redesigned and expanded introduction to its archival collections. This project was undertaken by Caitlin Donnelly, DRT Library Archivist. The guide answers questions such as:

  • What is an archive?
  • What kinds of materials are in archival collections?
  • How can I learn more about what collections the DRT Library has and what topics they cover?
  • How do I access the DRT Library’s archival collections?

The introduction can be found at http://www.drtl.org/Research/Archives.asp or by selecting “Research” from the menu bar at the top of each page of the library’s website and then clicking on “Archival Collections.”

Linked from the introduction are new pages that allow users to browse a list of all collections alphabetized by title and lists of collections grouped into broad topical areas. These pages will be updated in the coming months as a project to revise catalog records and finding aids for all archival collections gets under way.

Users are encouraged to submit comments about how helpful the new pages are and suggestions for ways to improve them. Such feedback will help the DRT Library provide a resource that researchers find clear, relevant, and beneficial.

If you have additional questions about archival collections at the DRT Library; need some help using archives to research Texas history or your Texas ancestors; or want to submit feedback about the new “Archival Collections” pages, you can meet with Caitlin at the library during regular business hours or contact her at cdonnelly@drtl.org or (210) 225-1071.

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