Course:2: Acquiring Your Collections
Lesson:Lesson 5: Accessioning--What Do You Have and Where Is It?
Topic:Lesson Five Introduction

Lesson 5: Accessioning--What Do You Have and Where Is It?


Once you have legally transferred a collection to your program, the next step in the accessioning process is to establish what archivists call "physical and intellectual control" over the records. What does that mean? It means making sure you know what you have and where it is.

This second step of the accessioning process takes place after the legal agreements have been made and the materials are in your physical custody. At this point, a staff member should be responsible for reviewing the collection and creating the documentation that your program will rely on to know what you have acquired and where it is stored.

This documentation should be created as soon as possible after you receive physical custody of the records. After all, you don't want to lose the records or get busy with something else and forget about them! This part of accessioning is usually a fairly quick task; and it will go faster the more you do it.

Lesson length icn

This lesson will take about 20 minutes to complete.

Torn records
Establish physical and intellectual control over your acquisitions.