Physics History Finding Aids Web Site Reaches Milestone
In September, the Physics History Finding Aids Web site hosted by AIP reached a major milestone in its one-year existence with the addition of its 100th item, the Finding Aid to the Papers of Léon Brillouin. All 100 may be used online at www.aip.org/history/ead/findingaids.html.
The Physics History Finding Aids Web Site is a jointly searchable set of Web-based documents with detailed descriptions of the contents of archival collections of interest to historians of science (physics, astronomy, and geophysics). It is the culmination of work provided by a rapidly growing consortium of archival institutions. Initially funded by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the original consortium consisted of the AIP Center for History of Physics and nine other leading archival institutions (see this Newsletter, Fall 2000, www.aip.org/history/newsletter/fall2000/findaid.htm). Since the grant period expired the consortium has been joined by the Library of Congress, University of Chicago, University of Pittsburgh, Georgia Institute of Technology, and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute.
Wishing to add new finding aids, we are actively seeking more members for the consortium. One method we will use is to create an online input form. Archivists who possess no prior knowledge of the standard (yet complex) markup language used to create online finding aids will be able to use the form to submit finding aid data.
Meanwhile we are adding a new section to the AIP History Newsletter to keep readers abreast of recently digitized finding aids. The new “Documentation Digitized” section joins our “Documentation Preserved” section in the back pages with a list of additions to the Finding Aids Web site. We welcome feedback from archivists and historians about improvements or suggestions for additional materials suitable for inclusion.