ArchiveWiki has a simple tree system so that its contents are easily accessible. It's based around the idea that we have a list of archive facilities; each archive has documents; the documents are split into sections and then subsections and then individual items.
The hierarchy looks a bit like this...
- Archive Listing - the master list of all archive facilities on the wiki
- Individual archive facilities, for which you will see one or both of...
- General information on finding and using the archive (e.g. National Archives) and...
- List of files (e.g. National Archives Files) which may be broken down further into...
- Series (e.g. National Archives file series MT)
- Subseries (e.g. National Archives file subseries MT 95)
- Individual items (e.g. National Archives item MT 95/8)
How far the hierarchy goes for any given archive facility depends on how much information we have for it. So, for example, Leeds Central Library has no specific files listed, just information on how to use the facility and a few ideas about what has been found there. The 'General Information' is therefore the only thing available and it's what you get immediately when you click on its name on the Archives page.
On the other hand, The National Archives has scores of files, and you'll find yourself clicking right through subsections to get to the individual files.
To prevent unmanageable page names, the conventions are as follows:
- Archive facilities get their full title as the page name. E.g.: Lancashire County Records Office.
- Archive facility file lists get their full title as above with the word 'Files'. E.g.: Lambeth Archives Files.
- Series and subseries get pages directly in their own name. Eg: MT 95.
Where an individual file has no known file reference, a dummy reference is created in the style of National Archives Files listings, as follows.
- For files owned by an individual (a personal collection), that person's initials form the letter "series" code, and each item receives a serial number. Hence Chris Marshall has items CM 01, CM 02 etc.
- For files at an archive facility but with no known file reference, the initial letters of the archive's name form the letter code. So any items found at Richmond Local Studies Collection would be RLSC 01, RLSC 02 etc.
And that's everything you could possibly want to know about the ArchiveWiki file system. Hoorah!