Accessions in March

Accessioning is how new records – and new artifacts – become officially part of a repository’s collection. We’re sharing this insight into recent accessioning work at the University of the West Indies (UWI) Archives.

Roots of the West Indian Pelican

We accessioned over 200 new records this March, and though it took a few months in planning it feels like a remarkable achievement. Let’s take a step back, have you ever wondered how records get into an Archive? Before records become part of the Archival holdings, they must be accessioned.

Accessioning is the process by which the Archives take legal and physical custody of records – it is the first step towards making records accessible to administrators, researchers and other users of the archives. Sushil Kumar in his book Archives Principles & Practices defines Accessioning as the practice of transferring physically and legally to a repository units of records at a single time. Well that makes it pretty much a legal transfer.

It also means to take and document the custody and receipt of records. Many archives refer to accessioning as a preliminary description of the record (content, context, structure) and…

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