Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Tuesday's Tip - Use ArchiveGrid to Find Archival Collections

This week's Tuesday's Tip is:  Use the website to find archival collections of papers, manuscripts, photos, etc.

The site description says:

"ArchiveGrid is an important destination for searching through historical documents, personal papers, and family histories held in archives around the world.

"Thousands of libraries, museums, and archives have contributed nearly a million collection descriptions to ArchiveGrid. Researchers searching ArchiveGrid can learn about the many items in each of these collections, contact archives to arrange a visit to examine materials, and order copies."

The site has a list of contributing artchives at  Obviously, this isn't ALL possible archival repositories, but there are many on this list.

There is a link on the home page to search the ArchiveGrid system - the search is at  

I entered "seaver family" (without quotes) in the search field at the top right of the screen above, and was rewarded with 197 matches:

With "seaver family" in quotes there were only 13 matches, all of which were pertinent.

Some examples from the latter list:

*  Seaver Family papers, 1832-1918, 1852-1881 (bulk). Seaver Family. (New York State Historical Documents)

*  Herbert and Dorothy Seaver, Jr. collection, 1833-1902., Seaver, Herbert, Jr, donor. (Western Michigan University)


  1. Randy - am I right that this site is only open to subscriptions by organizations, libraries, societies, etc.? Searching it was interesting, found a few relevant items... Well worth the effort.

  2. Oh boy! Thanks for this Randy! I just did a search and found a book on my Iverson ancestors I didn't know about. Now I just need to figure out how to get my hands on it. :)

  3. Randy,

    In my area, we have access to ArchiveGrid from home through my county public library -- it's free!

    Raleigh, NC

  4. Celia,

    The beta version of Archive Grid is open to everyone. Just access it at

    It's a wonderful source.