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Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference (MARAC) records

 Collection 0108-MDHC

The Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference (MARAC) was founded in 1972 to address archival issues of concern to archivists and manuscript curators in the mid-Atlantic states New York, New Jersey, Pensylvannia, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia. The collection contains the operating records of MARAC and includes the records of the Steering Committee and other MARAC committees and task forces. Also included are publications, conference programs, and papers presented at semi-annual meetings.


  • 1972-2019

Use and Access to Collection

This collection is open to the public and must be used in the Special Collections reading room. Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection.

This collection contains restricted materials. Materials of a sensitive nature, such as those containing personally identifiable information, are restricted for 75 years or the life of the individual and may by screened and removed by special collections staff. Please speak with a staff member if you believe that materials have been unnecessarily removed.

Duplication and Copyright Information

Photocopies or digital surrogates may be provided in accordance with Special Collections and University Archives duplication policy.

Copyright resides with the creators of the documents or their heirs unless otherwise specified. It is the researcher's responsibility to secure permission to publish materials from the appropriate copyright holder.

Archival materials may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal and/or state right to privacy laws or other regulations. While we make a good faith effort to identify and remove such materials, some may be missed during our processing. If a researcher finds sensitive personal information in a collection, please bring it to the attention of the reading room staff.


116.25 Linear Feet

Scope and Content of Collection

The Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference (MARAC) records cover the period from the establishment of the organization in 1972 to the present time. They include correspondence; working records of the main governing body, the Steering Committee, and other permanent and ad hoc committees and task forces; chairperson's files; treasurer's files; vice-chair's files; minutes; financial reports; papers presented at conferences; conference programs; publications; audiovisual materials; photographs; memorabilia, and electronic records.

Administrative History

The Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference (MARAC) was organized in June 1972 at a gathering of thirty-three archivists and manuscript curators at the University of Maryland's College Park campus. The group sought to establish a regional archival professional association, drawing its membership from the states of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, Delaware, and West Virginia and the District of Columbia. The resulting organization focused on less experienced professionals, staff of small repositories, and archival issues below the national level -- areas in which the Society of American Archivists was perceived to have little interest. In this same year, six other regional organizations, including the New England Archivists, Midwest Archives Conference, Northwest Archivists, and the Society of Southwest Archivists, were formed.

The initial purposes of the group were to plan practical, action oriented conferences, workshops, and other means to increase professional competence, to preserve local historical resources, and to promote cooperation with colleagues in related fields. Four months after the organizational meeting, the group held its first semi-annual conference in Wilmington, Delaware. These conferences continue to be a major focus of MARAC's activities and offer a wide range of sessions, workshops, and tours designed to appeal to beginners as well as experienced professionals and staff from both small and large repositories.

Early in the life of the organization, its members embarked on an active publications program. Production of a newsletter, the Mid- Atlantic Archivist)(MAA), began in October 1972, and it continues to appear on a quarterly basis. Several technical leaflets providing guidance on processing issues and administrative decisions have been issued in conjunction with the MAA. Membership directories have been regularly compiled and several occasional papers have also been issued, including Guidelines for Archives and Manuscript Repositories, and Paul Mucci's manual entitled Paper and Leather Conservation.

The governance structure of MARAC consists of an elected Steering Committee, which is composed of a chairperson, a vice-chair, a treasurer, a secretary, eight state representatives, and four at large representatives. A number of committees have also been established to assist in the administration of the organization; these include nominations, membership development, finance and budget, publications, education and outreach, program, and local arrangements. Two additional committees administer MARAC's awards program. The Arline Custer Memorial Award committee annually awards prizes honoring publishing achievements by individuals of institutions in the states comprising MARAC. The Finding Aids Award committee also annually recognizes excellence in the compilation and production of various types of finding aids compiled by institutions in the MARAC region or by MARAC members. On the local level, each of the seven states and the District of Columbia, which comprise the MARAC region, has a caucus. The caucuses serve as forums for discussion of archival issues and needs, promote the exchange of information, and sponsor of conferences, workshops, and other special programs within their individual geographic areas.

A list of MARAC officers is available on the MARAC website.


This collection is organized as nine series:

Series 1
Constitution and Steering Committee
Series 2
Chairperson's Files
Series 3
Administrative and Committee Files
Series 4
Series 5
Series 6
Audio-Visual Materials
Series 7
Photographs and Slides
Series 8
Series 9
Electronic Records

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

This collection contains born-digital materials. If you would like to access these materials, please contact us prior to your visit as items may require specialized software for access.

Custodial History and Acquisition Information

The archives were originally deposited with the University of Maryland Libraries in September 1978, with the formal instrument of deposit being executed five years later. The collection continues to grow as former officers donate their records, more conferences are held, and additional publications are created.

Processing Information

The original grouping of MARAC records deposited with the University of Maryland Libraries was processed in November 1982. Duplicates were discarded and materials were transferred to acid neutral folders and boxes. A guide to the archives was also prepared at that time.

A second grouping of records donated by former officers and files relating to publications and conferences was integrated into the established arrangement scheme in September 1985. Duplicates were discarded, and the added materials were placed in acid neutral folders and boxes. At that time, Series 5, Publications, was established. Oversized materials in Series 5 were placed in separate boxes. Items relating to local arrangement and program committees at conferences were shifted into Series 3, while items contained in conference packets remained in Series 4.

The revisions undertaken in 1986 incorporated materials donated and restructured files concerning the governance of the organization, its constitution, and steering committee into Series 1. The latter group had previously comprised part of Series 3, Administrative and Committee Files. Other processing completed in 1986 included formal establishment of the restrictions covering the files which document MARAC's Technical Leaflet series.

In September 1989, files generated by Karen Paul during her tenure as chairperson of MARAC were added to the archives as Series 2. Also, significant groupings of material were added to the files documenting the activities of the Nominating Committee, Local Arrangements committees, and several task forces.

A significant accretion of materials was added to the collection in April 1997. Series 2 was expanded with the addition of files from former chairpersons Lee Stout and Karl Niederer. Three new series were also established at this time: Series 6 for audio and video cassettes, Series 7 for photographic materials, and Series 8 for MARAC-related memorabilia collected over the years.

Files generated by former chairpersons Janet Linde and James Byers were added to Series 2 in November 2003. Other significant additions included Steering Committee minutes and related materials that were added or integrated into Series I and State Caucus, Local Arrangements Committee, and Program Committee materials that were added to Series 3. Also, a large grouping of Treasurer's material was organized according to a retention schedule revised and approved by the current MARAC Treasurer.

In 2006, additional materials were incorporated, and Series 3 was divided into seven subseries: Administrative, Local Arrangements Committee, Papers Presented at Conferences, Program Committee, State Caucuses, Treasurer, and Vice Chair. This was done to facilitate easier updates of the collection in future years.

In 2019, additional materials were incorporated into the collection. Some duplicate materials were also removed from the collection and discarded.

Guide to the Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference (MARAC) records
Processed in 1982 by Mary Boccaccio. Additional materials incorporated in 1985, 1986, 1989, 1997, 2003, and 2006. Finding aid revised in 2019 by Emily Flint and Lauren Brown.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Revision Statements

  • 1993-04: Revised by Lauren Brown and Anne Turkos.
  • 1997-05: Revised by Pamela Alsop.
  • 1997-05: Appendix revised by Lauren Brown and Pamela Alsop.
  • 2000-05: Revised by Adina Wachman.
  • 2003-11: Revised by Christie Lutz.
  • 2006-12: Revised by Lara D'Agaro.
  • 2007-04-15: EAD markup checked and verified using JEdit software by Jennie A. Levine.
  • 2017-08-10: Finding aid checked and revised following ArchivesSpace migration by Emily Flint.
  • 2018-04-04: Finding aid reviewed and minor updates made by Caitlin Rizzo.
  • 2019-06-12: Additional accessions integrated by Emily Flint and Lauren Brown.

Library Details

Part of the Special Collections and University Archives

University of Maryland Libraries
Hornbake Library
4130 Campus Drive
College Park Maryland 20742