A man wearing white cotton gloves sorts through photos and documents from a bin.

What’s an archive and community archivist?

An archive is a time capsule and active space where past and present merge. It contains primary resources that preserve the history of several generations.

An archivist appraises, arranges, describes, and preserves archives.

Archiving is storytelling and you can be a Community Archivist! These toolkits can be used to reclaim and preserve history.

ASU Library provides free Archive Starter Kits to the communities we serve (Latinx, Black, Asian and Pacific Islander, Indigenous, and LGBTQ). Please contact our team if you want a Starter Kit or if you want to borrow equipment to scan material or record an oral history interview.

Community-Driven Archives (CDA) Toolkits

Kid archivist 101

Resources to introduce children to archives and the importance of preserving their story. This activity book was created by our student archivists! It can be completed in a classroom setting or with family.



Recommended readings

"'Invisibility Is an Unnatural Disaster': Feminist Archival Praxis After the Digital Turn" in the South Atlantic Quarterly

"21st Century Community Outreach and Collection Development: ASU Chicano/a Research Collection" in the Journal of Western Archives

"Metrics and Matrices: Surveying the Past to Create a Better Future" in The American Archivist

"Community-Driven Archives: Conocimiento, Healing, and Justice" in the Journal of Critical Library and Information Studies