18 July 2013

Archives Hub (UK) -- really neat centralized resource!


For UK researchers, there is a really neat resource called Archives hub, http://archiveshub.ac.uk/.  It is described by “The Archives Hub enables you to search across descriptions of archives held at over 220 institutions across the UK.”

One issue we often have in the US (and I suspect in other countries as well) is so many archives, so little centralization!

The closest I can think of to something somewhat centralized (and it is not US-specific) is Worldcat, http://www.worldcat.org/.  Though, its focus is more libraries and their holdings and this isn’t the same as archives and their holdings.  Though, one will sometimes find microfilmed versions of original records held in libraries and that can lead you to the repository which holds the originals.

Just looking at the list of participating archives was instructive.  I didn’t know that there was a National Co-operative Archive.  Given my families working class roots, this archive might hold something relevant regarding my ancestors or the industries they were associated with.  You can search on any term of interest. I searched on Hollinwood and Chadderton, two locales where I had family living in the 19th century, and entries were found from six different repositories; not all local.

Are you aware of other “Archives hub” type resources?

Just knowing that records exist and where they are held is so important to our research.  A big issue for us genealogists is that we don’t know what we don’t know when it comes to records and repositories.




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