Standards for Archival Description: A Handbook
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CHAPTER 5: FINDING AIDS AND OTHER DESCRIPTIVE FORMATS (Non-Cataloging Structure and Content Standards)

The entries in this chapter are truly a miscellany. The fact that such a collective chapter is necessary is illustrative of the current state of development of archival description standards in the U.S. While considerable effort has been applied to the development of cataloging-related standards in the U.S. during the last decade (see especially Chapters 3 and 4), most other archival descriptive formats have gone virtually untouched by standards developers.1

The first three entries in this chapter represent earlier attempts by archivists to formalize practices for the preparation of other kinds of finding aids. The first two especially, Inventories and Registers and The Preparation of Inventories, have had significant impact on archival practice although they were never formally adopted as standards.

The next two entries summarize standards originally developed two decades ago to meet the needs of allied professionals, abstractors and librarians. They could be incorporated in or provide models for the development of standards for traditional archival practices.

By contrast, the standards described in the last two entries provide a glimpse of the future. ANSI's Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) and ISO's Standard Generalized Markup Language (SGML) are widely recognized and used internationally, but not yet used for specific archival applications. [Ed. Note: Between 1995 and 1998 the Society of American Archivists developed the Encoded Archival Description (EAD) DTD for encoding archival finding aids using SGML.] Archivists need to understand how EDI, SGML, and similar standards provide structural standards for automated documents and are actually redefining the very concept of a "document." Not only could these standards be employed directly to improve archival descriptive practices; they may well prompt us to make significant adjustments in every phase of archival activity as we attempt to manage records in electronic form.

Standards for archival finding aids

As is evident in the previous chapters, most recent efforts in this country have focused on the development of standards needed in automated information systems, especially those operating in the "shared environments" of the national bibliographic networks. For the most part, the descriptive "product" associated with these systems is a catalog record.

APPM makes it very clear that cataloging is only one of a whole range of interrelated activities that comprise an archival descriptive program.

An archival catalog may be only one part of a more complex institutional descriptive system, which may include several other types of finding aids (e.g., registers, inventories, calendars, indexes, and shelf and container lists). In such a system, a catalog record created according to these rules is usually a summary or abstract of information contained in other finding aids, which in turn contain summaries, abstracts, or lists based on information found in the archival materials themselves.2

This view is certainly consistent with the "systems approach" that has characterized U.S. descriptive practices since the early 1970s as reviewed in the introduction to Chapter 1 of this handbook. The value, indeed demand, for other descriptive sources is underscored in APPM's declaration that "the chief source of information for archival materials is the finding aid prepared for those materials."3

Despite their continued use and central role in the larger descriptive system within most repositories, formats other than the catalog record have received little recent attention in the U.S. from the perspective of standardization. This was not always true. The introduction to Chapter 1 describes the work of the SAA Committee on Finding Aids whose report, Inventories and Registers: A Handbook of Techniques and Examples (1976), provided the first critical analysis and guidance for the construction of these most widely used descriptive formats. The committee expressed some hope that the report would be considered for adoption as an SAA standard, but no formal action was ever taken. The effort probably lost momentum in the early 1980s when so many archivists turned their attention to coping with the burgeoning national bibliographic networks.

Another source for guidance that has received wide use but never achieved formal "standards" status is the National Archives publication, The Preparation of Inventories. Issued in 1982 as Staff Information Paper 14, it was intended for in-house use, but most of its instructions were easily transferrable to other archival repositories, especially those serving state and local governments. Despite such ad hoc use, however, the profession as a whole has never critiqued its contents for wider applicability.

Actually, this NARA staff information paper represents a fairly typical approach to regulating descriptive practices. Most repositories with fully developed descriptive programs have prepared some kind of in-house processing or procedures manual to govern form and usage in the preparation of finding aids. While these have provided effective tools for standardizing practices within a single institution, few have tried to extend these guidelines beyond their own institutional contexts.4

As Steven Hensen and others have pointed out, the greatest impetus for standards development in the U.S. has been the desire to participate in the "shared environment" of the national networks.5 Until recently, variations in practices for producing paper-based finding aids could be tolerated because there was no effort underway to merge, process, and access them collectively in an automated system.6 This may well change as these shared systems become capable of carrying not just catalog records but also the full texts of the finding aids from which they were prepared and even the texts or images of archival documents themselves. The need for local adaptations and flexibility will continue, but these must be balanced against the advantages of shared practice.

At what might seem a more practical level, the growth in local automation use, using stand-alone personal computers or a computer serving only the archives' parent institution, has opened a market for software that can produce traditional finding aids through a combination of word processing and database technologies. While the USMARC AMC Format is promoted by some for the production of series- and item-level finding aids, others argue that it is not necessarily the best carrier for this data. Whatever the outcome of this debate, agreement on standard formats would produce obvious savings in development costs. Ultimately users also would be better served if they could come to expect a "standard" form of finding aid as their research progressed from repository to repository.

Externally developed standards

There are a range of standards developed outside the archival profession that could also be applied to the preparation of finding aids and other descriptive tools. Perhaps the largest group relates to editing and publishing, described in Chapter 9. Similarly, the labeling and filing rules developed by records managers and librarians are discussed together in Chapter 10.

Two standards developed by the National Information Standards Organization (NISO) might have potential applications in archival practice and are described in this chapter. ANSI Z39.14-1979, Writing Abstracts, provides guidance on identifying "the basic content of a document quickly and accurately" and describing the document in such a way that users can "determine its relevance to their interests, and . . . decide whether they need to read the document in its entirety." Although this standard is designed to apply only to abstracts of printed materials (in such contexts as the abstract preceding a scholarly article in a journal or the annotation of an entry in a bibliographic database), it covers processes resembling those used by archivists in preparing the narrative portions of series and collection descriptions. The international equivalent is ISO 214:1976, Documentation--Abstracts for publications and documentation.

A second NISO standard worth considering is ANSI Z39.10-1971 (R1977), American National Standard for Directories of Libraries and Information Centers. It could be easily used when compiling directories of archival repositories for any purpose, from a national guide project to a pamphlet listing institutions in a particular city or region. The international equivalent, which explicitly includes archival repositories in its scope, is ISO 2146:1988, Documentation -- Directories of libraries, archives, information and documentation centres, and their data bases.

The final two entries reflect some of the fundamental changes that automation has brought to recordkeeping. As noted earlier, the very definition of what constitutes a document is changing. The concept of a document has evolved "from a physical reality to a processing metaphor for many different information bearing forms."7 No longer just "sequences of textual and graphic symbols represented by ink on paper," they now include "a variety of components including database information, video, animation, and voice."8

The international standards community has expended considerable effort in the development of standards that define the structure of documents so that they can be processed and communicated from system to system. The two most widely recognized efforts in this area are described here: the ANSI X12 suite of Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) standards and ISO 8879:1986, Standard Generalized Markup Language. EDI generally addresses the structures of transaction documents, functionally similar to those that required "forms" in a paper-based environment (purchase orders, invoices, price quotations). SGML is more commonly applied to documents that are largely textual (books, correspondence, manuals), although it can also handle graphics and images and multimedia using HyTime extensions.

Members of both the library and museum communities have begun to consider these two standards for direct applications in managing collections and transactions. The archival community needs to increase its understanding of these and similar standards. They not only have potential for improving our internal practices but they will govern the structure of records in electronic information systems that archivists will evaluate for long-term retention and use.9

Further Reading

Bearman, David. Archives and Museum Data Models and Dictionaries. Archives and Museum Informatics Technical Report no. 10. Pittsburgh: Archives and Museum Informatics, 1990.

Bearman, David. "A User Community Discovers IT Standards." Journal of the American Society for Information Science 43 (September 1992): 576-578.

Berner, Richard C. Archival Theory and Practice in the United States: A Historical Analysis. Seattle: University of Washington Press, 1983.

Berner, Richard C., and Uli Haller. "Principles of Archival Inventory Construction." American Archivist 47 (Spring 1984): 143-155.

Borko, Harold, and Charles L. Bernier. Abstracting Concepts and Methods. New York: Academic Press, 1975.

Brand, Katharine E. "The Place of the Register in the Manuscripts Division of the Library of Congress." American Archivist 18 (April 1955): 59-67.

Gracy, David B., II. "Finding Aids Are Like Streakers." Georgia Archive 4 (Winter 1976): 39-47.

Lucas, Lydia. "Efficient Finding Aids: Developing a System for Control of Archives and Manuscripts." American Archivist 44 (Winter 1981): 21-26. Later published in A Modern Archives Reader: Basic Readings on Archival Theory and Practice, edited by Maygene Daniels and Timothy Walch, 203-210. Washington, DC: National Archives and Records Administration, 1984.

Papenfuse, Edward C. "The Retreat from Standardization: A Comment on the Recent History of Finding Aids." American Archivist 26 (October 1973): 537-542.

Roe, Kathleen. "From Archival Gothic to MARC Modern: Building Common Data Structures." American Archivist 53 (Winter 1990): 56-66.

Spring, Michael B. Electronic Printing and Publishing: The Document Processing Revolution. New York: Marcel Dekker, 1991.

Inventories and Registers: A Handbook of Techniques and Examples

Paper (36 p.).
Out of print.

Development, approval, and maintenance:

SAA's Committee on Techniques for the Control and Description of Archives and Manuscripts, later renamed the Committee on Finding Aids, prepared the first draft of the handbook in 1972-73. After wide review, SAA Council, in April 1975, "directed that the handbook be published as a report of the Committee on Finding Aids to draw comment from the profession. Subsequently, the Council will consider issuing the handbook as a Society standard." No further action was ever taken, however.

Scope and structure:

The handbook "represents an attempt . . . to describe present [1976] practice in a broad range of archival institutions thought to have effective finding aid programs." The Finding Aids Committee collected samples of inventories and registers and analyzed them for content and purpose. The Committee found that, while wide terminology and intended use varied widely, archival inventories and manuscript registers generally conformed to similar structures. The handbook enumerates the following typical elements: (1) preface, (2) introduction, (3) biographical sketch (for manuscript registers) and agency history (for archival inventory), and (4) series description. Also described are two elements common to manuscript registers but rarely employed in archival inventories: scope and content notes and container listings. Finally, two additional elements are described though rarely found in either: item listings and indexes.

The handbook provides a summary of each element's purpose and describes its typical content and format. Several examples from actual repository finding aids illustrate these descriptions.

Archival applications:

This handbook has received wide use as an educational tool and has provided basic guidance to individual practitioners in the preparation of traditional finding aids.


Bearman, "Documenting Documentation." Archivaria 34 (Summer 1992): 33-49.

Brown, Thomas E. "The Society of American Archivists Confronts the Computer." American Archivist 47 (Fall 1984): 366-382.

The Preparation of Inventories

Staff Information Paper 14.
Paper (22 p.).
See "Publication format and availability"
below for additional information.

Development, approval, and maintenance:

Prepared by Edward E. Hill for the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). Intended as a source of in-house rules, but distributed on request for consultation and use outside of NARA.

Scope and structure:

Contains instructions on the preparation of inventories in the National Archives and Records Administration. The instructions are presented in three broad sections: Purpose and Scope, Content and Organization, and Format and Style. The Content and Organization Section provides detailed instructions for the construction and content of specific parts of the inventory: general introduction, subgroup introduction, series entries (including title entries, arrangement and narrative description, grouping series, and order of series), appendixes, and index. Often includes examples from actual inventories to illustrate specific rules.

Archival applications:

Although no hard data exists, anecdotal evidence suggests that The Preparation of Inventories has been used by many other archival repositories to provide general guidance for description, especially those serving state and local governments.

Publication format and availability:

Available free on request from the Archival Publications and Accessions Control Staff (NN-E), Room 20W, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, DC 20408. Also published in slightly revised form in Maygene Daniels and Timothy Walch, eds., A Modern Archives Reader: Basic Readings on Archival Theory and Practice (Washington, DC: NARA, 1984), 211-235.


Berner, Richard C., and Uli Haller. "Principles of Archival Inventory Construction." American Archivist 47 (Spring 1984): 135-138 passim.

Breton, Arthur J. "Preparation of Inventories [review]." American Archivist 45 (Fall 1982): 484-485.

Guidelines for the Preparation of General Guides to National Archives: A RAMP Study

Paper (67 p.).
See "Publication format and availability"
below for additional information.

Development, approval, and maintenance:

Prepared by Françoise Hildesheimer, under contract with the International Council on Archives; published and distributed by Unesco's Records and Archives Management Programme (RAMP) which operates within the Division of the General Information Programme.

Scope and structure:

The study "is intended to assist national archives institutions, more specifically in the developing countries, in the preparation of a basic model finding aid which will introduce information users to the nature, value and potential uses of archives."

The study first explains the definition, use, and historical development of archives guides and examines how they reflect governmental structures and archival practices in each country. The bulk of the study provides a model plan for a guide and guidance for constructing the specific elements within that model. The model is presented in three parts: introduction (which includes general information about the repository, regulations concerning use, loans, and copying, historical information about the creating agencies, and archival terminology), description of actual collections or holdings, and indexes and appendixes. An appendix to the study provides a large number of examples reproduced from actual national archives guides.

Archival applications:

While directed primarily at national archives in developing countries, this study nonetheless is one of the few existing analyses of the archival inventory and could supplement any further work to develop standards for other types of repositories.

Publication format and availability:

Available free on request from General Information Programme and UNISIST, Unesco, 7 place de Fontenoy, 75700 Paris France. Because such requests may take several months to fill, archivists in the U.S. may find it easier to purchase reproductions through NARA's Archives Library Information Clearinghouse (ALIC) or the Educational Resources Information Center (ERIC).

ANSI Z39.14-1979 (R1987)
Writing Abstracts

1979, reaffirmed in 1987.
Paper (15 p.).
ISBN 0-88738-987-2.
Available from NISO. $20.00

Development, approval, and maintenance:

The original 1971 version and the 1979 revision were both prepared by Subcommittee 6 of the American National Standards Committee on Standardization in the Field of Library Work, Documentation, and Related Publishing Practices, Z39. Committee Z39's successor is the National Information Standards Organization (NISO), which has maintenance responsibility for the standard. NISO reaffirmed the standard in 1987. After circulating it for comments in early 1992, it is being revised.

Scope and structure:

Intended to assist authors and editors in the preparation of abstracts, which are defined as "an abbreviated, accurate representation of the contents of a document." It contains sections on the purpose and use of abstracts (focusing on journals, reports and theses, monographs and proceedings, and access publications and services), treatment of document content, and presentation and style. A series of examples reproducing actual abstracts illustrate the guidelines.

Related standards:

ANSI Z39.14 is "in full accord" with the international equivalent, ISO 214:1976. Documentation--Abstracts for publications and documentation. Published in ISO Standards Handbook: Documentation and Information, 3rd ed. (Geneva, Switzerland: International Organization for Standardization, 1988), 420-430. ISO 214 was reconfirmed in 1992.

Archival applications:

The guidance provided in this standard could supplement analyses undertaken toward the development of guidelines for writing the narrative portions of collection- or series-level descriptions in archival finding aids. Of course, the standard also has direct application for the preparation of abstracts which precede articles in archival journals such as the American Archivist.


Borko, Harold, and Charles L. Bernier. Abstracting Concepts and Methods. New York: Academic Press, 1975, 41-50.

Tibbo, Helen. "Abstracting Across the Disciplines." Library and Information Science Research 14 (1992): 31-56.

ANSI Z39.10-1971 (R1977)
Directories of Libraries and Information Centers

1971, reaffirmed 1977.
Paper (12 p.).
Out of print.

Development, approval, and maintenance:

Developed by Subcommittee 13 of the Z39 Standards Committee on Standardization in the Field of Library Work, Documentation, and Related Publishing Practices. Adopted by the American National Standards Institute on 4 November 1970 and reaffirmed in 1977. Maintenance responsibility rests with the Z39 Committee's successor, the National Information Standards Organization (NISO).

The original version of this standard was developed concurrently with the original version of its international equivalent, ISO 2146. The international standard was revised in 1988; NISO does not intend to revise the standard.

Scope and structure:

The standard is intended to provide "practical guidelines in the compilation of various types of library directories." It defines directories as reference works "designed to give the name and address, the size of collection(s), subjects, staff, geographic area (national, regional, local) covered, and type (public, college, university, research or school library, information or documentation center)."

Following general guidance on arrangement of entries, tables of contents, indexes, and format, the standard lists data elements for several specific types of institutions: state libraries, public libraries, college and university libraries, special libraries, documentation and information centers, school libraries, and regional libraries, cooperative systems, and processing centers.

Related standards:

The international equivalent is ISO 2146:1988, Documentation -- Directories of libraries, archives, information and documentation centres, and their data bases developed by ISO TC 46. Available from ANSI. $51.00. Also published in ISO Standards Handbook: Documentation and Information, 3rd ed. (Geneva, Switzerland: International Organization for Standardization, 1988), 495-519.

Unlike the ANSI standard, the ISO standard provides a straight list of data elements instead of organizing them by type of institution. It then indicates in a table which data elements are essential for four main types of directories: international directories, national directories published in bilingual or multilingual countries, national directories intended for international use, and national directories.

Publication format and availability:

Out of print. Z39.10 was administratively withdrawn by ANSI because it exceeded the 10-year review cycle without revision or reaffirmation.

Archival applications:

Archivists attempting to compile directories at the national or local level would benefit from the organizational and informational models provided by these standards.

ISO 8879:1986
Information processing--Text and office systems--
Standard Generalized Markup Language (SGML)

Online information on SGML
Online information on Encoded Archival Description (EAD)

Paper (155 p.).
Price code XC
Amendment 01:1988.
Paper (15 p.). Price code XZ.
Available from ANSI.

Development, approval, and maintenance:

ISO 8879, Standard Generalized Markup Language (SGML), was developed by Joint Technical Committee 1 (JTC1) of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Committee (IEC). JTC1 has maintenance responsibility for the standard and issued an amendment in 1988.

Scope and structure:

SGML is a programming language that provides a set of rules for defining document structures (called Document Type Definitions or DTDs) and related tagging schemes with which to identify individual structural components within documents. Following SGML protocols, a user would define a document type (e.g., memo, procedure manual, book, journal article) and all the tags required to identify the structural components of that document type. SGML makes it possible to create electronic documents independent of any document processing system (e.g., word processor, typesetter) and subsequently to manipulate those documents for various purposes, e.g., print publication, interactive database, CD-ROM. Note: although SGML is often described as a "markup" language, the tags defined using SGML are not intended primarily to specify typographical features (e.g., italic, 10-point, bullet), but to identify structural elements, such as chapter, appendix, author, heading, embedded quotation.

Related standards:

In 1987 the Association of American Publishers developed an SGML tag set for books and journals that was approved as ANSI/NISO Z39.59.

The U.S. federal government adopted ISO 8879 as a Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS Pub 152) in 1988. In the late 1980s the U.S. Department of Defense instituted its Computer Assisted Logistics System (CALS) under which it now requires contractors to deliver all documentation for weapons systems in electronic form with textual portions in SGML.

Archival applications:

[Note: Between 1995 and 1998 the Society of American Archivists developed the Encoded Archival Description (EAD) DTD for encoding archival finding aids using SGML.]

Document and tag set definition has potential application in the process of managing the components and the products of archival description, especially the components that might be outside the scope of MARC tagging (see Chapter 3). Just as important, if records creators adopted standard definition and tagging of documents in electronic form, the result could be "self-describing" records that are system independent, thus easier to manage over time.

Several efforts in allied professions also deserve attention. The Computer Interchange of Museum Information Committee (CIMI) suggests that SGML may provide a structure for exchanging data about museum collections. The Text Encoding Initiative is a internationally supported undertaking to create machine-readable versions of literary and other texts in standardized forms.


Bearman, David. "Authority Control Issues and Prospects." American Archivist 52 (Summer 1989): 298-299.

Dollar, Charles M., and Thomas E. Weir, Jr. "Archival Administration, Records Management and Computer Data Exchange Standards." In A Source Book of Standards Information, edited by Stephen M. Spivak and Keith A. Winsell, 204-205. Boston: G.K. Hall, 1991.

Goldfarb, Charles F. The SGML Handbook. New York: Oxford University Press, 1991.

McDonald, John. "Data and Document Interchange Standards: A View from the National Archives of Canada." In A Sourcebook of Standards Information, edited by Stephen M. Spivak and Keith A. Winsell, 231-239. Boston: G.K. Hall, 1991.

Reynolds, Louis R., and Steven J. Derose. "Electronic Books." Byte 17 (June 1992): 263-268.

Wright, Haviland. "SGML Frees Information." Byte 17 (June 1992): 279-286.

ANSI X12 suite
Electronic Data Interchange (EDI)

Available from ANSI.
See additional information below.

Development, approval, and maintenance:

ANSI chartered ASC X12: Accredited Standards Committee for Electronic Data Interchange in 1979 to develop and maintain EDI standards. The first EDI standards were published in 1983. Originally focused on purchase orders and invoices, the work has expanded to encompass a broad array of business transactions from price quotes to shipping. The Data Interchange Standards Association (DISA) serves as the secretariat for ASC X12. Nearly 60 industry-specific groups exist to advise DISA and promote use of EDI among their members. The Book and Serials Industry Systems Advisory Committees (BISAC and SISAC, respectively), serve closely allied groups. Many librarians are active in SISAC, selecting data elements and devising formats appropriate for ordering, invoicing, claiming, and canceling serials.

Scope and structure:

X12 is a suite of standards containing formats designed to meet the requirements of specific business transactions. By 1990 there were more than 30 specific standards with nearly 100 more in development. Examples of approved standards include:

ANSI X12.1-1986 Purchase Order Transaction Set
ANSI X12.2-1986 Invoice Transaction Set
ANSI X12.7-1986 Request for Quotation Transaction Set
ANSI X12.13-1986 Price/Sales Catalog Transaction Set

A common set of data elements available for use in each X12 standard is defined in ANSI X12.3-1986, Data Element Dictionary. Only a few basic data elements in each transaction set are mandatory, so that each user community that adopts an X12 standard to govern its transactions can specify those that are most essential to its needs.

Archival applications:

Some members of allied professions have begun exploring the potential of EDI, including serials librarians as described above through SISAC and the Computer Interchange of Museum Information Committee (CIMI) which suggests EDI may provide a structure for exchanging data about items loaned for exhibits.

No specific archival applications are known to exist, but two aspects of EDI bear watching. First, like SGML and OSI data exchange standards (see Chapter 2), EDI standards encourage the production of structured data that is system-independent, thus facilitating long-term access and use. Second, files created using EDI may, at least in part, "describe" themselves. EDI-structured files should have imbedded in them information about the content and function of the records that will be essential components of future archival description products.

Publication format and availability:

Individual X12 standards are not available separately. The collection of all X12 ANSI-approved standards for EDI is available from ANSI for $600.00. Contact ANSI for additional information.


Cargill, Carl F. Information Technology Standardization: Theory, Process, and Organizations. Bedford, MA: Digital Press, 1989.

Fisher, Sharon. "Moving Data Using EDI." Byte 16 (April 1991): 162-163.

Paul, Sandra K. "Do We Have a Say in X12 Standards?" Information Standards Quarterly 4 (April 1992): 14-15.

Santosuosso, Joe. "Accredited Standards Committee X12 October 1990 Meeting." Information Standards Quarterly 3 (January 1991): 18-20.

"Serial Item Contribution Identifier: New SISAC Code." Computers in Libraries 13 (January 1993): 23-24.


Arranged alphabetically.

ANSI/NISO Z39.69-199x. Patron Record Data Elements (draft standard). Paper (50 p.). Available from NISO.

The Control of Records at the Record Group Level. 1950. National Archives Staff Information Paper 15. Out of print.

Findings on Finding Aids. 1988. Mid Atlantic Regional Archives Conference. Brochure (6 p.). Available from MARAC.

This brief summary of the component parts of traditional archival finding aids was prepared by MARAC's Finding Aids Awards Committee.

The Manuscript Society Criteria for Describing Manuscripts and Documents [in manuscript dealers' catalogs]. 1990. The Manuscript Society. Paper ( 11 p.). Single copies available free of charge from the Manuscript Society.


1 It is important to remember that archivists in other countries have focused more attention on standards for other descriptive formats. See the discussion on standards efforts in Canada, Great Britain, and by the International Council on Archives in Chapter 13.

2 APPM, Rule 0.7. For additional discussion of the context of cataloging within archival descriptive systems, see Fredric M. Miller, Arranging and Describing Archives and Manuscripts (Chicago: Society of American Archivists, 1990).

3 APPM, Rule 1.0B1.

4 An annotated bibliography of repository processing and procedures manuals, originally compiled by Karen Paul, is included in Archival Forms Manual produced by the SAA Forms Manual Task Force (Chicago: Society of American Archivists, 1982).

5 Steven L. Hensen, "RAD, MAD, and APPM: The Search for Anglo-American Standards for Archival Description," Archives and Museum Informatics 5 (Summer 1991): 4.

6 Chadwyck-Healey began compiling microfiche reproductions of archival finding aids in the U.S. in the early 1980s. See National Inventory of Documentary Sources in the U.S. (Teaneck, NJ, and Cambridge, England: Chadwyck-Healey, 1985-). It is issued in four parts: Part 1, Federal Records; Part 2, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress; Part 3, State Archives, Libraries, and Historical Societies; and Part 4, Academic Libraries and Other Repositories. Parts 1 and 2 were reviewed by Lydia Lucas in the American Archivist 48 (Fall 1985): 432-433; parts 3 and 4 were reviewed by Leon Stout in the American Archivist 51 (Winter and Spring 1988): 154-155. Notably, the index compiled to accompany the microfiche uses headings based on LCSH.

7 Haviland Wright, "SGML Frees Information," Byte 17 (June 1992): 279.

8 Michael B. Spring, Electronic Printing and Publishing: The Document Processing Revolution (New York: Marcel Dekker, 1991), 6.

9 See discussions in David Bearman and John Perkins, "Standards Framework for the Computer Interchange of Museum Information" (Museum Computer Network, 1993) also published in Spectra 20:2 and 3 (1992); and John McDonald, "Data and Document Interchange Standards: A View from the National Archives of Canada," in A Sourcebook of Standards Information, eds. Stephen M. Spivak and Keith A. Winsell (Boston: G.K. Hall, 1991), 231-239. Another document structure standard they consider is the ISO 8613 suite of standards known as Office Document Architecture/Office Document Interchange Format (ODA/ODIF).


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Standards for Archival Description: A Handbook
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