The University of Maryland Libraries is pleased to announce the launch of
ArchivesUM (http://www.lib.umd.edu/archivesum), an online database of
finding aids for manuscript and archival collections at the University of
Maryland Libraries. In this collaborative effort with individuals from the
Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities (MITH), staff coded
finding aids using Encoded Archival Description (EAD). The database
currently holds 420 collection abstracts and 120 full finding aids and also
includes subject resource guides and an advanced search feature.
The finding aids in ArchivesUM are created using three tools.
1) Microsoft Access database. This relational database, which staff of the
Archives and Manuscripts Department created, reduces duplication of effort
by also working as a collection management tool. Staff use the database for
all stages of the records life cycle, including accessioning,
record-keeping, and descriptive purposes. Fields in the Microsoft Access
database are mapped to correspond with EAD tags.
2)Converter. Staff utilize a converter program written in Java to convert
database records into XML files in a matter of seconds. The converter
communicates within the Microsoft Access database using Java Database
3) Administrative Interface. Once staff convert the files to XML, they
upload them to the server using an administrative interface. Via the
administrative interface, the repository editor can upload, delete, and
convert finding aids to HTML. This pre-processing of the XML document was
built into the system so that the finding aids do not have to be converted
to HTML at the time of the request.
For more information, please read our "About ArchivesUM" page
Jennie A. Levine
Curator for Historical Manuscripts
Archives and Manuscripts Department
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742
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