Utilizing record connections in the Field Book Project records between collection, item, and creator level


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This presentation addresses the types of content included in the Field Book Registry records, with a focus on the Encoded Archival Context (EAC) records used to describe persons, organizations, and expeditions. It also provides search tips for finding field book records and page scans in Collections Search.

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Utilizing record connections in the Field Book Project records between collection, item, and creator level

  1. 1. &Smithsonian InstitutionLibrary, NMNHUtilizing record connections betweencollection, item, and creator level
  2. 2. FIELD BOOK PROJECT TO DATE• Over the last two and a half years, NMNH and SmithsonianInstitution Archives have been working to create a Field BookRegistry• December 2012, records were made available on SmithsonianCollection Search CenterContinued updates include more than 300 new field bookrecords, expanded creator record content, and links to nearly250 digitized field books.
  3. 3. SPECIMENS, FIELD BOOKS, &PUBLICATIONSSmithsonian’s ongoing efforts:• Online specimen databases• Biodiversity Heritage Library• Field Book ProjectOnline description enables discovery ofconnections across type of document &discipline.
  4. 4. CATALOGING FIELD BOOKS• Primary documents• Various methods to describeand organize• Include a wide variety ofcontent• Present a wide variety ofchallengesConnections across disciplines isimportant because field books oftencontain information relating to morethan one scientific discipline.
  5. 5. WHAT SEPARATES TYPES OFDOCUMENTATIONWhen collecting documentation is separated by discipline,important connections can be lost in the process.This is true for specimens, field books, andpublications.
  6. 6. CATALOGING STRUCTURENCD CollectionCollectionId: NCDC78Title: Edgar Alexander Mearns,field books, 1890-1924Owner: EACO15Creator: EACP07Description: 200 folders of Mearnss fieldnotes on ornithological collecting andobservations in the Philippines, Kenya, …MODS ItemMODSId: MODSI1281Collection: NCDC78Title: Field notes and Journal, March25 - April 5, 1885Dates: 1881, 1885Creator: EACP07Expedition: EACE 0017Abstract: Mearns uses this journal torecord his daily activities and lists ofmostly birds and mammals seenduring his natural history research …EAC PersonPersonId: EACP07Name: Mearns, Edgar A.(Edgar Alexander), 1856-1916Dates: 1856-1916Biographical history: Edgar A. Mearns wasa military doctor and prolific naturalistwho collected birds, mammals, plants…EAC ExpeditionExpId: EACE0017Name: Smithsonian-Roosevelt AfricanExpeditionDates: 1909-1911Description: Under former PresidentTheodore Roosevelt, the SmithsonianInstitution-Roosevelt African Expedition …EAC OrganizationOrgId: EACO15Name: Smithsonian Institution,National Museum of Natural History,Division of Birds
  7. 7. SMITHSONIAN’S COLLECTIONSEARCH CENTER• Field BookProjects Recordson SCSC• Botany recordsPrimary ways toSearch…• Online media• Types• Topics• Names• Places• DateTo see only Field Book Registry records, limit Catalog record source.
  8. 8. ENCODED ARCHIVAL CONTEXT• EAC-CPF• Describes individuals, expeditions and organizations• Social Networks and Archive Context Project (SNAC)• Links records at multiple levels in registry• Includes descriptive abstract and controlled subject fields• Similar to Plant Collectors on JSTOR
  9. 9. ALBERT SPEAR HITCHCOCK• Biographical history• Controlled subject fieldsA. S. Hitchcock
  10. 10. DEMONSTRATING THECONNECTIONSCreator records offer explicit connections andconcise source of search terms and access pointsEAC records• Biological Survey of Panama Canal Zone• A. S. Hitchcock• U.S. Department of Agriculture
  11. 11. SURVEY OF THE PANAMA CANALExpedition record
  12. 12. FIELD BOOKS FROM THE SURVEY• Years: 1910-1912• Collections: 8 collections from 4 departments• Field Books: 14 items (catalogs, journals, correspondence)5 of the 8 identified collectors, several of whom were notSmithsonian staffsearch 1 (linked to Survey record)search 2 (inferred connections)
  13. 13. PUBLICATIONS FROM THESURVEY• 12 publicationsfound fromoriginalcollectors• Some werepublished 10years after theSurvey wascompleted• BHL/FBP blogseriesBHL advanced search
  14. 14. E. A. Goldman RecordRecord linkPage 4
  15. 15. SPECIMENS FROM THE SURVEY• Records include disciplines, location,date, and creator. Other informationvaries.• Specimen 715729: gives no indicationit comes from Survey, even thoughlocation, date and collectorcorrespond.Specimen Databases
  16. 16. A. S. HITCHCOCK’S FIELD BOOKS• Field Books: 45 items• Collections: 4 collections in 2departments (Acc. 12-054,RU007067, RU000229, Acc.11-093)search 1 (all ASH records)only ASHs field notes
  17. 17. US DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE• Organization record abstract may be complete• Results for Organization search vary
  18. 18. WHAT’S COMING NEXT…• Expanding Expedition record content• Organization records like US Department of Agriculture• Clarifying organization affiliations in controlled fields• US National Museum and US Department of Agriculture• Newly digitized field books
  19. 19. Thank you for attending!Any questions???Lesley ParillaCataloger,Field Book ProjectSmithsonian Institution Archives /National Museum of Natural Historyparillal@si.edu202-633-2304