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Rebecca

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"It has confirmed for me that archives are potentially a career path or at least something I have an interest in pursuing."

Rebecca at the London Metropolitan Archive
Rebecca at the London Metropolitan Archive

There seems to be this myth surrounding online databases that they will negate the need for a workforce of archivists to catalogue and file - based on my experience at the LMA, this is not true. 

Last week I mislabeled a fair few boxes with a slightly wrong reference code - going back and altering them all made me realise just how much human error can affect the whole process of archives.

I was directly inputting the information onto the M2A database instead of simply amending the paper list. The database is incredibly easy and simply to use, and is quite satisfying to input final data on. Using the database is making me more interested in the parallel work of the digital interface and the physical work of translation, notation and deciphering what collections hold. The nature of work in an archive such as the LMA seems to be constantly shifting based on new technologies and packaging systems, constantly striving towards the most efficient form of archiving.

This whole experience has been a brilliant and (I assume) accurate insight into what working at the London Metropolitan Archives is like. It has confirmed for me that archives are potentially a career path or at least something I have an interest in pursuing, either in volunteering positions or internships. I will probably see if there is an opportunity to volunteer at the LMA over the summer to continue work and build up more experience.