Transferring Office Files to Archives


The Middlebury College Archives preserves the permanent historical records of the College. If your department has materials that require preservation, please contact Special Collections and we can provide assistance.

The Special Collections representative will provide an overview of the legal, administrative, and historical value of the material. Records with historical value include those that document policy and major decisions, record major activities or events, summarize financial or other statistical data, or clarify procedures. Many other records such as chronological files or collections of vendor catalogs, are set up for convenience or other limited purposes and are generally not useful once they have served their immediate purpose.

At the time the Archives representative visits your office, he/she will discuss how to weed (eliminate) unnecessary files and material and will formulate procedural guidelines. Before the records are packed is the time to weed: duplicate materials, routine letters of transmittal, memos, notes, routing slips and other obsolete materials should be removed. To help with the decision-making, a document called Identifying Archival Materials in Your Files is available to Middlebury College faculty and staff.

It is the responsibility of each office and department to identify sensitive or confidential materials that require restricted access. Examples of such material include class lists with grades or notes about a particular student, letters of recommendation for students, staff and faculty, confidential meeting minutes from senior level offices, and personnel files. There could be legal ramifications for the College and staff involved for improper release of confidential materials and information. Please, call the Archives if you have any questions about potentially sensitive material.

Preparing Records for Transfer


1. Place files in manila folders - please avoid hanging folders.

2. Label the folders with a brief description, and date them. Even if the date is approximate, it is better than no date at all, and your office is in a much better position to do that than Special Collections staff.

3. Remove materials from binders - all materials are eventually stored in archival folders.

4. Pack the folders comfortably into the Records Retention boxes that Special Collections will provide.

5. Keep the files in the original sequence.

Labeling Records Retention Boxes

1. Once the files are packed, please clearly identify the contents on an index card or small sheet of paper and slide that sheet into the packing envelope attached at the end of the Records Retention box. Please include: Name of the Office Series (general category) to which the records belong (e.g. correspondence, reports, student records, publications, etc.) Date range of the materials

2. Record the month/year of transfer in the lower left corner.

3. Record the number of boxes in the lower right hand corner along with the total number of boxes being transferred (e.g., "Box 2 of 7)


Office of the President, Correspondence


1990 - 1999

10/05 Box 2 of 11

College Advancement, Publications

1998 - 2004

10/05 Box 3 of 7

Restricted and Confidential Material

Materials to be transferred that the department/organization have determined should have restricted access should be brought to the attention of the Archives before they are transferred.

1. Restricted material should be transferred to its own folders

2. Label the folder with a brief description and date (as described above)

3. Then clearly mark the folder "Restricted".

4. Keep all restricted folders together, and separate them from non-restricted folders with a divider. File them at the back of the Records Retention box.

5. Whether part of or the entire contents of a Records Retention box is restricted, clearly mark the card in the sleeve on the front of the box:

Academic Affairs Faculty Meeting Minutes Dean of the Faculty 1993/94 - 1999/2000 RESTRICTED 10/05 Box 1 of 3

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