Thursday, May 12, 2016

Archives Express boxes

One challenge that many academic archivists have (especially those in a private institution without an active records management policy) is getting records from departments, student organizations, and offices on a regular basis. In some cases, we might get the records as a clump of 20 boxes (which may take weeks to process), or we might get 2-3 pages of accruals sent via intercampus mail every few days. Or, in some sad cases, we might not get anything at all.  So, I started thinking about ways that we could have a special kind of mailbox that would be like a direct line between the office and the archives.

While sifting through our supplies during our move, I found that we had a ton of archival boxes that I wasn't quite sure what to do with.  They were designed to fit papers/folders vertically rather than horizontally, which I preferred.  And then I realized- these could be our mailboxes!  And the Archives Express box was born:

The idea is that this small box fits well on a desk or in a shared office space and can serve as a visual reminder for folks to be stashing things away for the University Archives.  Each box contains about 15 folders, a USB flash drive, some folder post-it labels (printing on post-its has been a life changer for me, future post on that to come!), and some basic instructions.  

I first tried it in an academic department and soon word spread and another academic department and a student organization requested one.  They've only been out for a couple of months, so we'll see how they go...  :) 

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