ArchivesSpace training on the historic campus of the University of Virginia

BY ANNE MARIE LYONS, TRAINING AND LIBRARY SOLUTIONS CONSULTANT

Last year, Atlas Systems became a Registered Service Provider of ArchivesSpace. Since then, it’s been full steam ahead in getting Atlas team members prepared and knowledgeable about ArchivesSpace.  As part of that effort, on October 31 through November 2nd, 2016, Chris Youngblood and I attended ArchivesSpace training workshops at the Alderman Library at the University of Virginia.

The workshops were conducted by the exceptionally skilled trainers, Mark Custer, Archivist and Metadata Coordinator at Yale’s Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, and Noah Huffman, Archivist for Metadata and Encoding at Duke’s Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

(Left to Right) Anne Marie Lyons, Atlas Systems; Noah Huffman, Duke University; Mark Custer, Yale University; Chris Youngblood, Atlas Systems

(Left to Right) Anne Marie Lyons, Atlas Systems; Noah Huffman, Duke University; Mark Custer, Yale University; Chris Youngblood, Atlas Systems

We would also like to thank Elizabeth Wilkinson, Archivist at the University of Virginia, as well as University of Virginia staff members, for hosting these workshops and providing such a welcoming atmosphere. There were a number of other ArchivesSpace users in attendance, which made for fantastic discussion about how different institutions make decisions about archival description. Chris and I left these workshops feeling confident and excited about helping libraries implement and use ArchivesSpace.

We covered ArchivesSpace in detail, but what we found particularly valuable about these workshops was the personal experience that Mark and Noah offered, as well other participating archivists. There were lively discussions about how detailed levels of description need to be, which data fields to use so that information displayed as desired on the public interface, and how data is mandated to be formatted if archives are participating in consortia. Mark also demonstrated the new top container and location plugins that are available in version 1.5.1, while Noah shared some scripts he developed using the ArchivesSpace APIs.

As an added bonus, we got to spend time on the beautiful University of Virginia campus, which is breathtaking during this time of year. Even on a cloudy day, the fall foliage is magnificent.

University of Virginia Academical Village

University of Virginia Academical Village

We learned that Edgar Allan Poe attended the University of Virginia for a period of time, and his room in the Academical Village has been preserved as a historical site.

Sign outside of Edgar Allan Poe’s room

Sign outside of Edgar Allan Poe’s room

Interior of Edgar Allan Poe’s room

Interior of Edgar Allan Poe’s room

We also found this statue of Icarus, which is situated between Alderman and Clemons Libraries.

Much thanks again to Noah, Mark, Elizabeth, and the University of Virginia for the wonderful ArchivesSpace workshops!