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Penrose Library

Citation Styles and Tools: Archival Citations

How to construct citations in MLA, Chicago, APA, ACS, and ASA, and tools that can help you

Citation parts

If you are using archival sources in your research (papers, presentations, or other published materials), citations are required. There are different ways to cite archival sources depending on the format required by your discipline. Archival citations can be tricky for finding the right elements, and different institutions can require different structures for citations of their material, so check with them as well. It will make your life much easier if you keep track of this while researching, as it can be difficult to go back and find the folder or exact title.

1. Title: usually the title given by the archives to a file or item (you can also find this in the finding aid); in the absence of a title provide a short description, add a relevant date at the end to distinguish it from similar materials if necessary

Herbert Bolton letter to Drury


2. Name of collection: The title given to the collection by the archives, you don't need to included any dates that might be at the end of the title.

Clifford M. Drury Papers


3. Accession or Collection Number: The number given to the collection by the archives

WCMss005


4. Box number: the number of the box in which the archival record is physically stored, Folder number: the number of the folder in which the archival record in physically stored (if foldered)

Box 7, Folder 3


5. Repository and location: the name of the archives or library

Whitman College and Northwest Archives

Examples

ITEM LEVEL: Used when you're citing one specific document

Item Description (order or negative number if applicable). Box number, Folder number. Accession or Collection Number. Collection Name. Repository.

Letter, Mrs. Genevieve Vollner Bonner to Drury, undated. Box 1, Folder 1. WCMss005. Clifford M. Drury Papers. Whitman College and Northwest Archives.

 

COLLECTION: Used when you're referring more generally to the collection at large.

Collection Name. Accession or Collection Number. Repository.

Clifford M. Drury Papers. WCMss005. Whitman College and Northwest Archives

FOOTNOTES

Item Description (Neg or Order Number if applicable), date, box number, folder number, Collection Number, Collection Name, Repository.

Letter, Mrs. Genevieve Vollner Bonner to Drury, undated, Box 1, Folder 1, WCMss005, Clifford M. Drury papers, Whitman College and Northwest Archives.

BIBLIOGRAPHIC CITATION

Collection Name. Collection Number. Repository.

Clifford M. Drury Papers. WCMss005. Whitman College and Northwest Archives

Creator. (Date). Item Description (Box Number, Folder Number, Negative/Order number if applicable). Collection name, Accession Number, Repository.

Bonner, Genevieve Vollner. (Undated). Letter from Mrs. Genevieve Vollner Bonner to Clifford M. Drury (Box 1, Folder 1). Clifford M. Drury papers, WCMss005, Whitman College and Northwest Archives.

 

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