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A guide to using archival sources

What are archives?

Archives are materials that are created, used, received, and collected by a person, family, or organization during the course of their daily activities and preserved as a result of their continuing value.

Some examples of archival records include:

  • Correspondence
  • Diaries and journals
  • Maps and plans
  • Graphic material including photographs, slides, negatives, drawings, paintings etc.
  • Meeting minutes and agendas
  • Financial records such as ledgers and account books
  • Legal documents
  • Electronic records
  • Scientific data
  • Audio and visual material, including oral history interviews
  • Notes and manuscripts
  • Annual reports
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