The latest events, happenings and goings on at the Archive and Study Centre!
Very many thanks to Pat and Sam of Wennington Old Scholars and to Bob of Caldecott for a great and gratefully received boost to our project of creating a Unified and Comprehensive Collections Catalogue. Their time here this week has taken us closer to our goal of a single, powerful, searchable database of the catalogues of all the collections we hold.
We have over 400 (!) individual collection catalogues and listings. The majority of these are in Word document and spreadsheet form, and cannot be directly imported into the dedicated database software which we purchased (thanks to the Heritage Lottery Fund) during the "Therapeutic Living With Other People's Children" project. This means they can be searched manually, or through free text queries; but that is slow and labour-intensive, and not a patch on the speed, richness and reliability that the dedicated catalogue database software makes possible - nor a patch on the many other things that become possible once you have a powerful database tool fully populated with information.
So, in their brief time here Sam and Pat checked 83 catalogues, 67 of which had been superseded by subsequent cataloguing and could be taken out of the system. 12 catalogues were translated into a database-friendly format using the cataloguing template created by former project archivist Matt Naylor, and can now be uploaded into the database. 4 were set aside for checking by the archivist.
Meanwhile, using Matt's cataloguing template, and concentrating on the numerous individual collections relating to Caldecott, Bob created 12 new catalogues, all database-ready.
It's amazing what volunteers can add to an archive! Quite apart from the joy of the company! Thankyou!