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From Casual History to Digital Preservation

TitleFrom Casual History to Digital Preservation
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2007
AuthorsDavidow, A.
Secondary TitleMuseums and the Web 2007. Proceedings
PublisherArchives & Museum Informatics
Place PublishedToronto, Canada
EditorTrant, J., & Bearman D.
Keywordsarchival metadata, digital preservation, fixity, on-line collecting, raw archive

Traditional history relies on the ability to review hundreds or thousands of relevant documents and artifacts. Using Web 2.0 tools, an archive can now gather those objects on-line, creating an historical record broader and deeper than ever before possible. In conceiving its "Katrina's Jewish Voices" project in late 2005, the Jewish Women's Archive realized that it was not enough to create a "raw archive" of such objects. For digital preservation we require assurances of fixity, as well as the capture of significant metadata about objects, their contributors and creators (where possible), and about the relationships between complex objects. In this project, we made good progress towards these goals and made a major step forward in our goal of becoming and exemplifying the "Archive for the 21st century."