Philadelphia Area Archives Research Portal (PAARP)

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Philadelphia Area Archives Research Portal (PAARP)
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CLIR Hidden Collections Grant

The initial group of finding aids provided on this site result from the CLIR funded "Hidden Collections in the Philadelphia Area: A Consortial Processing and Cataloging Initiative," a 27-month project beginning in July 2009, which produced finding aids for a selection of the 23 participating PACSCL institutions' greatest "hidden" collections and existing sub-standard finding aids. This site helps satisfy PACSCL's "Hidden Collections" Processing Project's goal of "providing a single access point for all of the region's research collections," and therefore, presenting insight into the country's political, economic, social, religious and cultural experiences, as well as Philadelphia's role in shaping America and its citizens.

In 2013, the Philadelphia Area Consortium of Special Collections Libraries was awarded $249,794 for the "Uncovering Philadelphia's Past: A Regional Solution to Revealing Hidden Collections" Project. With generous funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Council on Library and Information Resources administers this national program to identify and catalog hidden special collections and archives.

This 17-month collaborative project built upon the previous (2009-2011) $500,000 Hidden Collections processing project and involved processing select collections from the unprocessed holdings of PACSCL libraries, as well as several non-PACSCL member repositories in an effort to foster greater regional collaboration. The selected collections were identified as being of high scholarly importance during the previously completed PACSCL Consortial Survey Initiative or by recent repository staff following the same model for collection surveying. The most recent Hidden Collections processing project focused tightly on historical collections that document the development of Greater Philadelphia - Philadelphia, its adjacent counties, and its web of connections in the Delaware and Lehigh Valleys - as one of the country's preeminent industrial, commercial and cultural centers during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Together these collections show the complexity and interconnections of life in the region, as well as the scientific, cultural, aesthetic, social and spiritual mores of American society from the earliest European settlements through more than three centuries.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this website do not necessarily reflect those of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation or the Council on Library and Information Resources.