Ask the Archivist
We would like to announce a new pilot service the Empire State Library Network is launching that is available to CLRC members. You may be familiar with the Ask the Lawyer service and we now have Ask the Archivist. This is a one-year pilot and ESLN will evaluate its effectiveness at the end of the first year.
This service is available to provide answers to basic questions regarding archives and special collections. This service is staffed by archivists at several of the Councils including LILRC of the Empire State Library Network (ESLN). The staff will provide advice to colleagues on all aspects of archival work, such as processing, preservation, reference, acquisition, appraisal, and digital projects. We invite all your questions on archives and special collections, big or small. Questions can be submitted through the online form found below.
Responses will be handled on a first come first serve basis and we cannot currently guarantee a time frame for any response. Most responses will be handled in 1-2 weeks.
Each participating Council provides, at no cost to members, the Ask the Archivist service. To request the service, members must complete the “Ask the Archivist Request Form.” Members should provide as much information as possible on the issue to ensure the archivist has the information needed to fully answer the member library’s inquiry. Member libraries also have the ability to upload documents that might be helpful in assisting the archivist who is reviewing the issue.
Your inquiry will be reviewed by a Council archivist. If your inquiry is appropriate for the service, then the archivist will contact you in response to your inquiry. If your question has already been answered by the service or is beyond the scope of the service, we will contact you with suggestions for the next steps.
Please note: Members should check the RAQ section first before completing the form. Another member may have already asked the same question!
- The “Ask the Archivist” service is funded by each participating Council.
- The RAQs on the ESLN website are a compilation of answers collectively paid for by the following councils: CDLC, CLRC, SENYLRC, SCRLC, LILRC, Metro, NNYLN, RRLC, WNYLRC.
“Ask the Archivist ” was developed and piloted by the Empire State Library Network (ESLN) in 2022 and is now a service to members of nine regional library councils in New York. All “Ask the Archivist” answers are the copyright of ESLN. This service, and its content, are in service of the missions of New York State’s libraries and archives. Reproduction of this content, other than for internal use by a council member organization, can only be done with permission. For all other inquiries to reproduce this content, please write to the hosting library council, who will reach out to the author or respond directly. “Ask the Archivist” is a trademark of the Empire State Library Network whose members include the Western New York Library Resources Council, Capital District Library Council, Central New York Library Council, Long Island Library Resources Council, Metropolitan New York Library Resources Council, Northern New York Library Council, Rochester Regional Library Council, South Central Regional Library Council, and Southeastern New York Library Resources Council.