[Archivesspace_Users_Group] Generic top container note?

Lucas, Dawne Howard dawne_lucas at unc.edu
Mon Dec 13 13:16:40 EST 2021

Hi Olivia,

I’ve added this kind of information to the locations note field in the top container record, although it often doesn’t seem like the best place for it…more like it’s there so I use it when needed.


Dawne Howard Lucas (she/her/hers)
Technical Services Archivist

Wilson Special Collections Library
200 South Road, CB #3926
Chapel Hill, NC 27515
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
E  dawne_lucas at unc.edu<mailto:dawne_lucas at unc.edu>

From: Olivia S Solis<mailto:livsolis at utexas.edu>
Sent: Monday, December 13, 2021 1:13 PM
To: Archivesspace Users Group<mailto:archivesspace_users_group at lyralists.lyrasis.org>
Subject: [Archivesspace_Users_Group] Generic top container note?

Hey all,

I was wondering if any other institutions out there had an interest in a field that we have consistently found a need for: a generic note for staff attached to top container records. Reasons have included:

  *   We renamed a box. Because boxes may be part of citations or referenced in numerous places in internal documentation, staff sometimes goes to absurd lengths to keep an old box number when it is no longer relevant or the box really should be renamed. Having the old box # in a note that is indexed gets rid of that problem as there is an immediately obvious place to document the change. Staff and researchers often look for a box number they've found in citations and notes. Keeping this information in a note on the container record would allow us to locate the correct container through a key-word search.
  *   We merged two boxes into one.
  *   We want to document the space left in a box and ASpace currently allows no way to do that.
  *   The box has a nonstandard size (no container profile yet)
  *   The box needs some upkeep (new label, new container, it's missing a lid)
  *   We can't find a box. It's happened. We want to document all the places we've looked
  *   Other internal notes about the box's status, condition, barcode or indicator or history, restriction status.
It seems like ASpace wants us to document information about top containers in other places including Processing Notes attached to specific archival objects/resource records/accessions, assessments, location notes. Location notes sometimes could work, but we have limited staff time and can't update numerous records (all the archival objects/collections attached to a box or assessments attached to AOs/collections) to document a single change.

A generic note attached to top containers would solve a lot of problems for us. If you have encountered any similar issue, how have you approached them in ASpace?


Olivia Solis, MSIS (she/her)
Metadata Coordinator
Dolph Briscoe Center for American History
The University of Texas at Austin
2300 Red River St. Stop D1100
Austin TX, 78712-1426
(512) 232-8013

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