Through the activities of the Utah State Historical Records Advisory Board (USHRAB), the Utah State Archives will promote the establishment and enhancement of regional historical records repositories in Utah.
Utah operates many successful historical records repositories at its universities, historical societies, and archives. However, there are communities that have collections of historical materials that are not located in these repositories nor should they be. They belong in their historical and social context and should be available for research by the citizens. There is a need to establish regional repositories in the state of Utah to preserve, identify, and make accessible the rich resources of primary historical records that are at risk or unavailable to the public.
It is the objective of this program to establish and recognize institutions that will be authorized to collect, process, preserve, take custody of, and make available these records for research and study by the public. Thereby, the public, government entities, and other private institutions will have the confidence to place their records for safekeeping in these repositories.
These institutions may include any Utah organization or government entity willing to commit to the repository process and to preserve and provide access to these community or regional historical records. The repository region may cover a county or a multi-county area. They may include:
- communities where no organized program exists
- institutions that operate local history rooms
- institutions that have established a local historical records repository, such as college or university special collections.
Primary historical records that may be included in the repository
Personal and family papers and records, including correspondence, diaries and journals, financial records, family histories and genealogies, oral histories, reminiscences and autobiographies, photographs, home movies (both motion pictures and videotapes) and other family recordings, and other original documents.
Records of businesses and non-profit organizations, including retail, wholesale, mining, and manufacturing companies; farms, ranches, co-ops, and stockman’s associations; churches and private schools; social, fraternal, and service organizations; and hunting and fishing associations, golf and bowling leagues, and other recreational groups. These types of records consist of correspondence; minutes of meetings; tax returns, journals, ledgers, account books, and other financial records; advertising literature, newsletters, and other publications; photographs; motion pictures, videotapes and audiotapes; and other original documents.
Government records or microfilm copies of those records, including records of counties, cities and towns, school districts, special improvements districts and other units of local government. In some cases, the records of state and federal agencies, or of associations of government, may be included. These records consist of correspondence, minutes of meetings, cemetery records, financial records, and other records that provide information about the life of the community.
Regional Repository Requirements Organizational Support
The facility must be able to assume the ongoing responsibility for operating a repository. The repository should be affiliated with or part of an agency or organization that will make a long-term commitment to the repository for its managerial, physical, and financial support.
The repository will need to meet archival standards in maintaining the records, including cataloging, processing, and adequate storage conditions.
The repository should be able to provide public access to the records and be open to the public on a regular basis. The facility should meet required building codes for public use. The facility should be able to accommodate the needs of patrons and provide security for the records. Patrons should have access to microfilm readers, printers, and copiers. Internet access is desirable.
The staff is to be trained to help and assist the public in the use of the materials in the repository. Staff should be available to attend training, conferences and consultations provided by the State Archives.
Use the Records Storage Facility Evaluation Form to determine the adequacy of the records storage area.