This collection includes papers, posters, and discussion notes from the inaugural Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference for Off-Site Storage (MARCOSS), held April 10, 2018 at the University of Maryland Libraries. Traditional library concerns like access, preservation, systems, and collections are different in off-site storage than at the circulating libraries they support. MARCOSS gives participants the opportunity to develop a network among off-site storage library professionals in the mid-Atlantic region and learn about the work their colleagues do at their off-site storage facilities. Session topics include: preservation, shelving and inventory methods, technical systems for error reduction, integrating special collections in storage facilities, staff safety, and more.
Finding misshelved items can be next to impossible. After moving items into our offsite facility we soon discovered that we were getting requests for items that were on shelves we weren’t using. As time went on we realized that there were 2500+ missing items in our collection. Working with our database administrator we created a way of looking for these lost items by searching for gaps in our collection. Using this method we were able to locate a little over 1100 missing items in two months.
Keynote presentation for MARCOSS 2018, framing key issues and potential opportunities for libraries to leverage their investment in preservation storage facilities into a larger program of support for user services and collaboration.
The goal of this round table discussion is to share ideas and experiences with different shelving techniques. By drawing on the experiences of people from many different institutions and storage facilities, participants can hear about practices that were put into place, and how these may have evolved to better store different materials. Questions will revolve around how needs for the majority of the collection has expanded or changed. This will include location naming conventions in item records; environmental storage (including cool or cold storage); unique materials storage containers and strategies (oversize items, archival boxes, picture hanging storage, microfilm/microfiche cabinets); and rarity or security needs of specific collection materials. In our conversation, it is my hope that we can share our various successes and why they worked, as well as problems we encountered and their solutions so that others may not make the same mistakes. This will create a welcoming space for people to reflect on their own work in off-site storage facilities and to take others’ experiences to assist as they problem solve any projects or complications in the future.
How can library storage centers be better planned in response to the site, potential for future expansion, and module capacity? KSS Architects worked collaboratively to design the Library Service Center of Emory and Georgia Tech, responding to a graded site, poor soil conditions, and institutional needs for future expansion via a planning approach that manifested in a creative and practical facility design. By rethinking the Harvard model and adapting a cutting-edge “uber module” to center the design on the processing, all while meeting Factory Mutual standards, the Library Service Center design achieves a model for flexible storage that preserves assets while maximizing investments.
Although libraries have been storing materials off-site for decades, archives have only recently begun to send collections off-site. This has major implications for the systems and workflows we use to manage and retrieve materials. At the University of Maryland (UMD) Libraries, we use a combination of systems to make materials accessible at our off-site storage facility. For example, we use Aeon to manage researcher accounts and requests. We are currently split between two management systems as we upgrade from a homegrown Microsoft Access database to ArchivesSpace, which will also be our discoverability system for the public. Additionally, we have print materials that are discoverable via UMD's online library catalog. These systems would ideally integrate in order for patrons and staff alike to have a seamless experience when requesting and managing off-site collections. Our situation is not unique. During this roundtable, participants will discuss the systems they use to manage their archival and special collections materials, as well as the systems-related challenges they face as they move collections off-site. Participants will discuss and brainstorm possible solutions and workarounds for integration and enhanced access.