Description and Cataloging definition

Description and Cataloging. Means of description and cataloging included a long-dormant card catalog, an in-house database, an Inmagic database, online finding aids, and accession records. Few of the records, except for the online finding aids, are available to the public. In some cases, the records are not available to the public because an archive does not want to promote the use of the object collections, the thought being that, for the most part, they have little relevance to the mission of the archives.In other instances, objects are not cataloged at all. Reasons cited for the lack of cataloging include no fixed location for the object—if the item is just sitting on the floor or constantly being moved from one place to another, its database entry cannot be completed, and it tends not to be entered in the database in the first place. Other reasons for a lack of cataloging include the fact that many objects do not seem pertinent to the mission of the archives, and creating descriptive records for objects would merely take away from the time that could be spent creating records for items that are felt to be more important or useful. In the archives that - do value their objects, a lack of time and resources is often cited, along with the notion that the cataloging and description of objects is more difficult and is therefore relegated to the bottom of the pile.One of the initial suppositions of this study was that a lack of cataloging or description for objects would lead to a lack of discovery and use, but that, oddly enough, was not the case. One institution with little description for its objects sees significant research use being made of them, while another with thorough online descriptions of its object collections sees little use being made of them. Additionally, the institutions with the most thorough documentation of their objects do not make those records readily available to the public, either because of a lack of time and resources, or because of the notion that objects have less value to users.Another supposition of this study, that objects were often physically and sometimes intellectually separated from their original collections with a corresponding loss of context, did not appear to be a matter of importance. Except for one institution, where objects are physically removed from their collections as a matter of policy, objects most often remained physically and intellectually a part of their original collections. The problem of an object losing context through physi...

Related to Description and Cataloging

Department means the department of natural resources.
Board means the Board of Directors of the Company.
Person means any individual, corporation, limited liability company, partnership, joint venture, association, joint-stock company, trust, unincorporated organization or government or any agency or political subdivision thereof.