Archivists are professionals who maintain collections of documents and objects of historic interest to an organization. Archivists usually have graduate degrees and work for educational institutions, museums, historical societies andMeher Baba advent agencies. They analyze records for historic interest and significance. Some may acquire collections from donors and benefactors and then exhibit or preserve them. They are experts in their field and can determine the importance of items in their care.
Archivists deal with many types of documents. They read and review documents to deem their importance and potential future value to the organization. Documents are scanned or photographed and originals are preserved in folders or drawers. Computer databases are often used to locate and readily retrieve documents in their care.
An important area for archivists is research. They use their analytical skills to understand the content of documents and ascertain their context and significance to the organization. Sometimes archivists need to review manuscripts that are handwritten or in poor physical condition. This requires them to use their skills and techniques to decipher and translate poor-quality printed matter. Research can extend to reviewing films or photographs or relevant topics pertaining to organizational collections.
Archival experts acquire and preserve important documents and other valuable items for permanent storage or display. For example, an organization dealing with Pacific islands traditional ocean travel might collect and catalogue old drawings of wooden canoes, oars and photos of tribal villagers. Archivists use computer software to catalogue items after they document and photograph their collections.
Archivists sometimes help to coordinate educational and public outreach programs. Events like museum or organizational tours, workshops, lectures, and classes, are all part of conveying important and historical information to the public or to organization members.
Protection of Information
Exercising control over information is an extremely important aspect and duty of archivists. They must not only determine what documents, films and items require permanent safekeeping, but they must also establish the means of storage. Computer networks can store and protect important and significant organizational resources. Archivists must keep abreast of new technologies to be able to protect their valuable documents and collections. Photography, audiotape, CD, and DVD are commonly used to preserve and protect items for future use for organizations.