The Magical Wonders of
Archival Processing

Cataloging Elves

In honor of National Archives Month, here’s an exclusive sneak peek at how stacks and stacks of scripts, papers, photographs, disks and more are processed in the WGF Archive.

Imagine the last scene in RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK where rows of boxes with rare treasures sit and gather dust…waiting to be discovered.  Or transport yourself to a cold, dark garage where musty papers and old LPs in warped, dingy boxes long for attention.  Believe it or not, this is how many collections arrive at the WGF Archive.  Ah, if only magical elves existed!

The truth is it takes many hours to assess, process, house and catalog a collection.  We wish it were as easy as simply placing a book on a shelf, but it requires time, expertise, creativity, research, supplies and special programs and software to organize the archival materials.

Thanks to donations and grants, such as the generous support of the Writers Guild of America, West, the WGF Archive is slowly but surely providing brief catalog records and increasing access to more collections.  And now we’re even featured at the Online Archive of California.  Look for more collections to appear in the future!