Archives Initiative

Archives Initiative: a joint project with UC Santa Barbara

Archives Initiative is a collaborative project to create a digital archive of colonial Latin American archival materials digitized by Neogranadina, hosted at the University of California, Santa Barbara, with the support of the University of California Humanities Research Institute. Its main objective is to make freely available and accessible the hundreds of thousands of images that Neogranadina has digitized at the Centro de Investigaciones Históricas “José María Arboleda Llorente” of the Universidad del Cauca (Archivo Central del Cauca and Biblioteca del Colegio de Misiones) in Popayán and at the Archivo Histórico Regional de Boyacá in Tunja.

Our broader objective is to develop, adapt, and deploy tools for the collaborative creation of the catalogs and finding aids necessary to make materials such as these truly accessible, and to freely release the results of our work on open licenses so that they may be used and improved by everyone.

Our project is still at the development and testing stage and the digital archive is not yet available. We are currently focusing, on one hand, on the creation of the Collective Catalog of the Archives of Colombia (CCAC), a multirepository of archival descriptions for Colombian archives. This partly involves the digitizing the paper catalogs and archival descriptions of the archives with which we have been working in digitization, as well as normalizing their contents following international archival description standards, so that they may be included in the CCAC. On the other, owing to the fact that no such catalogs and finding aids exist for a substantial part of the materials we have digitized, on creating them in a new phase of our Collaborative Cataloging project.

To learn more about the CCAC, see the project website. And if you would like to be involved in the processing of the images that we have been generating in the digitization process and in creating new catalogs and archival descriptions, visit our page about processing by clicking here.


This project was supported in part by the University of California Office of the President MRPI funding MR-15-328710.