- What is a collection?
- What is a repository?
- How do I view the files within a collection?
- Are there descriptions of each collection?
- Where can I find information about how to access a collection and if there are any restrictions?
- Is there information about the language(s) of collection materials?
- What are Related units of description?
- How do I cite material from a collection?
- Is there a way to search by name, place or topic?
- How does the Advanced Search work?
- Do I have to include accent marks and other diacritics in my search terms?
- What is included in my search results?
- How do I save my results or recall a record that I previously found?
- How do I print a list of the files in a collection?
- What are the Import and Export links for on each record?
- Does AtoM include digital objects? (In progress)
A collection is a group of materials – records, papers, documents, images – that were created or assembled by a person, organization or repository. Other repositories may have used the term “fonds” when referring to a collection. Either term refers to various groups of records, which are organized and described in a hierarchical fashion. AtoM provides a description of each record within a collection and its position in the hierarchy (“Level of description”).
This is the department at Dumbarton Oaks that holds the materials and which you must contact in order to request access. For a list of repositories represented in AtoM@DO, click on Departments in the Browse menu.
When viewing a collection-level record, note the Context menu on the left, which includes links to records for the collection’s department, creator(s), and files.
If you see an arrow to the left of the collection title in the Context menu, click on the arrow to view records for the files within a collection. This will show you each of the record groups in the next level of the arrangement. Continue expanding each level to view the entire collection. To read the description of an individual file, click on its title to read its description.
Note: The lack of an arrow next to a collection title in the Context menu indicates that the collection has not yet been fully cataloged in AtoM. Check the Finding aids element in the Conditions of access and use area for links to any inventories or guides (PDF).
Every collection represented in AtoM includes a Scope and content note describing the collection in the Content and structure area.
Check the Conditions governing access note in the Conditions of access and use area. If you don’t find this in the file you are viewing, check the collection-level record.
Check the Language of material notes in the Conditions of access and use area. If you don’t find this in the file you are viewing, check the collection-level record.
Other collections that are related to the creator’s work, which may be of interest to the researcher, are noted in the Allied materials area of the collection-level record.
For ICFA collections, find a Preferred citation in the Notes area of the collection-level record. There is also a template provided on the AtoM@DO homepage. Currently it is not possible to export a citation.
Use the simple search box with terms for names, topics, dates or material types (e.g. – correspondence). Use quotes around multiple words to search for phrases or full names, or use separate fields in the Advanced Search functionality.
Browse across collections and locate materials by a name or keyword using the Browse menu options: Names, Places or Subjects.
Terms directly link to records throughout the system. This is a good method for users who are interested in creators that appear in multiple collections or minor entities that appear in other creators’ collections, as well as identifying collections, which meet a specific subject matter or place of interest.
Users can construct more targeted searches using this functionality by specifying the field in which to search for a specific term, or by using the Filters/Limits. If you know which department a collection belongs, then select the department from the Repository drop-down. Avoid using the General material designation, Media type, Digital object available, and Copyright status fields as AtoM@DO is not currently providing this information. (For more about digital objects, see 15. Does AtoM include digital objects?)
Note that terms like names and places may appear in fields other than Name or Place access points, so a more general search which does NOT specify a field may return more comprehensive results.
If you are looking for a foreign word with a diacritic, such as an accent or umlaut, you must type this character when entering your search term.
Results include any record in which your search term appears. This means collection-level records appear alongside of lower-level files that may be a part of that same collection. Record level is indicated for each result under “Level of description”. For lower-level records, the result will also indicate the collection name under “Part of”. The total number of records in which your term appears is indicated at the top of the results page.
Note that search terms are NOT highlighted in results typically. If your term appears in the Scope and content field it may be bolded on the results page, but terms are never highlighted within the individual record. To locate your term(s) within an individual record, ICFA recommends using your browser’s “Find” functionality or CTRL+F to search on the page.
Click the printer icon next to “Search for [Your search terms]” to print or save your search results as a PDF (More Help). To view individual records while keeping your page of search results right-click record titles to open them in new browser tabs.
To most quickly recall a previously identified record enter the reference code in quotes in the search box.
Print or save as PDF a file-level inventory for a chosen collection by clicking on the Reports icon next to the title at the top of the record (More Help).
The Import and Export links on the lower lefthand side of each page enables administrative users to add or save an XML version of the record. Only AtoM@DO administrators are able to add records.
ICFA will be adding digital images to its collections as the system develops. The only digital objects currently in AtoM@DO are images from DOA collections.
To view digitized images of documents and photographs click on Digital Objects in the Browse menu. Click the media type of choice to view thumbnails of the digital objects on a new page.
Digital objects also appear as individual items within their collection, as thumbnails in the lefthand column of the collection-level record and as item-level records nested within individual files. Click and drag the circle below the thumbnails to scroll through all of the digital objects in a collection.