Please note

Not everything held by the archive is catalogued. Cataloguing is an ongoing process. At present about 70% of our archive collection is fully catalogued.


What you will not find
The vast majority of the records contained in the archive catalogue do not contain digital images to actual archive documents. To view the documents you would need to visit the


Search Archive Catalogue
For a basic search, simply enter a word, words or phrase in the AnyText box and click on the Search button at the bottom of the screen.


Points to note
The search is not case sensitive (i.e. if you enter alfred bean it will also find Alfred Bean)

The search will look for exact matches only (i.e. if you enter Alfred John Bean it will not find Alfred Bean)

Searching: Which box should I use?

You may use one or more boxes for any one search


Any Text
Any word, words or phrase entered in this box will find all instances of that word, words or phrase because it is searching in all fields that contain textual information. Note that this can produce a very large list of results. If that is the case, start your search again (click on the Search our Catalogue link on the left of the page). Enter the same word, words or phrase in the AnyText field and then limit the search by also entering details in one of the other boxes.


Ref No
Use this box if you know the document reference e.g. LABX/DA/4/1/1. Do not put spaces between any elements of the reference.


Title
Each record has a title which gives a basic description, e.g. Burial Rate Book. Any word, words or phrase entered in this box will find a more limited hit list than that resulting from the same search in the AnyText box because it is searching on the title field only.


Date
This allows you to limit your search by date. You can specify a single date (eg. 1965), or a range of dates (eg. 1800-1805) or a century (eg. 13th century).


Description
To search for word(s) contained in the descriptions of records. Please note that not all records in the catalogue have a description.


Level
To search for records at a particular level in the catalogue. For instance select 'Fonds' for a particular archive collection, series to search for sections within a collection, item to search for individual files within a collection


Format
To search for records of a particular format in the catalogue. For example, to view digital images of the postcard collection select 'Digital Image'. By not selecting a format your search result hit list will include records of all formats.


Choosing 'And' or 'Or'
This is known as Boolean searching. It allows you to extend or narrow your searches.

'And' allows you to search for records that contain two or more words that you specify.

For example, searching for 'Danson' and 'House' will only find records in which both words occur. Records with just the word Danson or House will be excluded.

'Or' allows you to search for records which contain any of the words you specify.

For example, searching for 'Danson' or 'House' will find records that contain either or both of these words.


Wildcard searching
You can make searches more flexible using a wildcard. Wildcards allow you to search for all terms that begin with, end with, or include the search term you specify. The wildcard character is *.


Search for Places
To search for places enter the name of either a building, street, town; borough or county into the Place Name search box and click search.

A list of results will be displayed showing search results that contain the place you entered into the search box.

Click on the Code on the left hand side of the place name you are interested in to be taken to the authorised Place Name entry.

Once at the Place Name entry click on show related catalogue records at the bottom of the page to be taken to the catalogue record(s) that contains references to your chosen place name.


Search for People/Organisations
To search for either names of individuals or organisations enter the person/organisation into the Person Name search box and click search.

A list of results will be displayed showing search results that contain the names of person/organisation you entered into the search box.

Click on the code reference on the left hand side of the person/organisation name you are interested in to be taken to the authorised person/organisation entry.


Results Hit List
A search will produce a hit list of results. This includes reference numbers, titles, and date of the record(s). You can then look at further details of a particular hit by clicking on the underlined RefNo of the result you are interested in.


Next/Previous/Last/First
Select to scroll through the pages of the results list.

To see the full description of any record click on the highlighted numbers next to the hit list. Full descriptions provide detailed information on a record including title, date, description, access status etc.

The original search terms are highlighted in yellow.


Full Catalogue View
To see where an archive record/ document fits into its collection, click on the reference number (RefNo) which will display more details regarding the record. At the top of the result is a diagram of the whole collection of which the document is a part, similar to a family tree.

Click on the folder icon to open that section in the tree. To see full descriptions of any of the records in the tree click on the reference number.


Sorting Your Results
Where results can be sorted, click on the white arrow in the column you wish to sort.

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