[Archivesspace_Users_Group] Barcoding boxes and shelves in ArchivesSpace

Jordon Steele jsteele at jhu.edu
Wed Apr 18 10:17:32 EDT 2018

Hi Ben,

For what it’s worth, we are continuing to consider our ILS the canonical store of location data. In fact, it’s about all we consider it to be canonical for anymore, since the data model is very inhospitable to archival collections (duh). The reason why our ILS continues to be the canonical inventory management system is because our storage facility includes non-archives stuff too, and a staff that services it all. In other words, some of the library’s content is managed in ASpace (i.e our collections), but of course not all of it is. Might be different for you if your storage facility is going to be SC only, although I see advantages at the library level to having all of a library’s inventory managed in one system.

The challenge we are facing in 1-2 years is, were we to implement this RMST system I describe, how is locations data mirrored in our ILS and ASpace programmatically, and how are updates to locations mirrored in the two systems.



Jordon Steele
Hodson Curator of the University Archives
Sheridan Libraries
Johns Hopkins University
3400 N Charles St
Baltimore, MD 21218
jsteele at jhu.edu<mailto:jsteele at jhu.edu>

From: archivesspace_users_group-bounces at lyralists.lyrasis.org <archivesspace_users_group-bounces at lyralists.lyrasis.org> On Behalf Of Ben Goldman
Sent: Wednesday, April 18, 2018 9:36 AM
To: Archivesspace Users Group <archivesspace_users_group at lyralists.lyrasis.org>
Subject: Re: [Archivesspace_Users_Group] Barcoding boxes and shelves in ArchivesSpace

Hi Everyone,

Jordon's thoughts below are really helpful, and I'd be interested in hearing more about different institutional approaches to managing locations in ASpace, generally. At Penn State we are currently in the process of bringing online a new offsite storage facility for Special Collections, and are ultimately looking at moving 20,000+ containers to this new facility (starting this Fall). While we've traditionally managed locations (as well as containers) through our ILS (Sirsi), we're also looking at how to better leverage ASpace features as part of this shift. I would be pleased to hear from anyone (on- or off-list) who can share their experiences around similar considerations.

Best Regards,

Ben Goldman
Archivist for Digital Content & Strategies
Sally W. Kalin Early Career Librarian for Technological Innovations
Penn State University Libraries

Throughout 2018, the Eberly Family Special Collections Library will be conducting extensive collections maintenance to better serve our patrons and ensure the preservation of our materials. Researchers may experience intermittent interruptions in open hours; collections may be under review and access may be limited; and researchers may encounter longer wait times for replies and photoduplication orders. As much as possible, these disruptions to usual services will be announced in advance. Thank you for your flexibility and patience we work on this collections maintenance endeavor.

From: "jsteele" <jsteele at jhu.edu<mailto:jsteele at jhu.edu>>
To: "Archivesspace Users Group" <archivesspace_users_group at lyralists.lyrasis.org<mailto:archivesspace_users_group at lyralists.lyrasis.org>>
Sent: Wednesday, April 18, 2018 9:25:57 AM
Subject: Re: [Archivesspace_Users_Group] Barcoding boxes and shelves        in        ArchivesSpace


We’re considering something similar. Our library uses a unique identifier for locations called a RMST number (Range Module Shelf Tray), I think it’s a standard unique algorithm for high-density storage. This is at present exclusively used at our offsite storage facility, but we intend to adapt the approach to our onsite collections, too. So yes, big picture, I think the idea of assigning unique identifiers to your locations is a good one. A couple caveats you may have already considered:

•         Think about decoupling your container unique ID from your location ID. More flexible if you have to move stuff around.

•         Manage your location unique ID in ASpace’s locations module, not in container management.

•         Barcodes are not semantic character string, so barring some catastrophic failure of ASpace/your inventory management system, you may not be able to find your stuff. Doesn’t rule out using barcodes, just something as you’re assessing risk.

•         I would recommend you suppress your location unique IDs from public view for security reasons.



Jordon Steele
Hodson Curator of the University Archives
Sheridan Libraries
Johns Hopkins University
3400 N Charles St
Baltimore, MD 21218
jsteele at jhu.edu<mailto:jsteele at jhu.edu>

From: archivesspace_users_group-bounces at lyralists.lyrasis.org<mailto:archivesspace_users_group-bounces at lyralists.lyrasis.org> <archivesspace_users_group-bounces at lyralists.lyrasis.org<mailto:archivesspace_users_group-bounces at lyralists.lyrasis.org>> On Behalf Of James E. Cross
Sent: Wednesday, April 18, 2018 9:18 AM
To: Archivesspace Users Group <archivesspace_users_group at lyralists.lyrasis.org<mailto:archivesspace_users_group at lyralists.lyrasis.org>>
Subject: [Archivesspace_Users_Group] Barcoding boxes and shelves in ArchivesSpace


We are thinking of barcoding *both* our boxes and our shelves using ArchivesSpace. The thought is that by doing both we would have better inventory control and the ability to scan a box/shelf and retrieve information about it quickly. Have any of you done this? What were the pros and cons you discovered after doing the barcoding?

We look forward to hearing any information or suggestions you can give us. Thank you.


James Cross
Manuscripts Archivist

James Edward Cross, C.A.
Special Collections and Archives
Clemson University Libraries
Box 343001
Clemson, SC  29634-3001
Phone: (864) 656-5182
Website: http://library.clemson.edu/depts/specialcollections/

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