Introduction to Archivists’ Toolkit @ Dalhousie

The Dalhousie University Archives and Special Collections recently decided to make the transition to Archivists’ Toolkit.  Inspired by the AT@Yale blog, we decided to create this blog to document our experiences with the transition.

Our existing system is currently comprised of:

  • A robust, custom-built accessions database (in Microsoft Access)
  • A series of individual databases for processed collections (in Microsoft Access)
  • Approximately 280 EAD-encoded finding aids
  • A series of spreadsheets (in Microsoft Excel)
  • A large set of legacy finding aids for processed and unprocessed collections (in Word Perfect and Microsoft Word)

All of this data needs to be migrated into the Archivists’ Toolkit.  Policies and procedures need to be developed.  Authority files need to be created.  Needless to say, we’ll have our work cut out for us!

In addition to documenting the transition from our current system into Archivists’ Toolkit, the blog will also highlight some of the general information technology-related aspects of archival work.  We hope the blog becomes a valuable resource for archivists, archives users, and tech enthusiasts.  We encourage you to post comments and/or questions.

This blog is not affiliated with the AT development group, but we welcome their input and participation. Users needing answers to AT-related issues should post their questions to the Archivists’ Toolkit User Group, ATUG-L (subscribe at and/or to  Don’t forget to check out the AT Website or Wiki.

For regular news about the Dalhousie Archives and Special Collections (new acquisitions, special events, announcements, etc.), check the Dalhousie Libraries LibVine.