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Five College Archives and Manuscript Collections
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About Five College Archives & Manuscript Collections

Five College Archives & Manuscript Collections provides access to finding aids representing collections of historic records held by the Five Colleges (Amherst, Hampshire, Mount Holyoke and Smith Colleges and the University of Massachusetts Amherst). This site is the product of the Five College Finding Aids Access Project, funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The project's goal is to improve access to the manuscript and archival collections of the Five Colleges by publishing finding aids for these collections online.

The manuscripts and archives of the Five Colleges are a rich and diverse resource for students, faculty, and other researchers from a variety of disciplines. The collections are particularly strong in the following areas: women's history, social history and activism, African American studies, business and labor history, regional history, the sciences, politics and diplomacy, religion and missionary work, the arts, and education. The collections are not limited to these areas, however, and new uses and interpretations of the materials are continually being discovered. This site does not encompass all of the holdings of the Five Colleges, so interested researchers may also wish to contact the repositories directly.

Currently, the site includes over 1000 finding aids from seven repositories. These finding aids can be accessed through a keyword search, or browsed by institution from the home page. More finding aids will continue to be added as they are available.

About the Logo

The site's logo represents the five institutions involved in the project. It is based on an image found in Japanese Design Motifs, published by Dover Publications, Inc.

Technical Information

The finding aids included in this site are marked up in XML according to the Encoded Archival Description (EAD) standard. The site runs Cocoon publishing software that applies XSL stylesheets for displaying the finding aids as HTML in any standard web browser. Lucene is the site's search engine. Both Cocoon and Lucene are open source software projects of The Apache Software Foundation.


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Project funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
Last update: October 27, 2005