Researching archives

Unique personal and organizational holdings

Archival records are materials originally produced or gathered by specific persons or organizations for their own use. They can include correspondence, minutes, memos, diaries, business files -- and items not on paper, such as electronic data.

A set of archival records is unique. It reflects the life and work of a person or group, and may hold material unavailable anywhere else. The Archives has records donated by hundreds of people and groups, most Canadian. (In keeping with donors' wishes, access to some material may be restricted.)

A set of records (called a fonds; see terms and concepts) may contain material donated in separate lots over time. Each lot, called an accession, is given a number. The number tells us where that material is stored.

For many sets of archival records there are guides -- telling what's in them, and where it is.

Another link offers a list of documents related to specific sets of records -- articles, essays, and chronologies offering a wealth of history -- some also online.

Records of many individuals contain information about groups they worked with. And many group records trace the roles of key players. If you are interested in a specific person or group, feel free to contact us.

The online Inventory of the Records of The Body Politic and Pink Triangle Press includes a big section called Other sources of information: Archival resources. It lists holdings in the Archives for more than 50 people connected with the paper and the Press -- and, for some of them, links to material available at other websites.

Also available on this web site are guides to some of our Vertical Files, which contain material compiled about (as opposed to by) people and groups.

See also: Related documents

National Portrait Collection