Adopted by the Ohio Historical Society Board of Trustees November 14, 2008
A. The Ohio Historical Society administers the State Archives for the State pursuant to R.C. 149.30(C) and 149.31, and has adopted these policies for public records transferred to the State Archives.
B. Copies of this document shall be available to members of the public upon request.
C. The State Archivist may seek the advice of the Ohio Historical Records Advisory Board on issues that may arise in the application of these policies and may request its recommendations for revisions to the policies to improve the operation of the State Archives.
D. The following definitions shall apply:
1. Agency of Origination -- The agency which created the records or the agency now responsible for the function or work processes that caused the records to be created.
2. Appraisal -- The process of determining which records have continuing historical value.
3. Reappraisal -- The process of reviewing accessioned record series to reassess their continuing historical value.
4. Continuing Historical Value – The enduring usefulness or significance of records. Factors considered in the determination of continuing historical value include the subject matter of the record, its usefulness to historians, researchers, genealogists and other persons who use the State Archives, its physical condition, whether it duplicates records or information in the State Archives or another archival institution, whether the record or the information contained in it has been preserved in microfilm, and whether the record or information in it has been published.
5. Accession -- The formal process of accepting records into the custody of the State Archives documented by recording the agency of origination, the title of the records, date span of the records, the location of the records within State Archives, the quantity transferred, and the final quantity following processing.
6. Deaccession – The formal process of removing records from the custody of the State Archives. Deaccession shall occur only when material meets one or more of the following criteria:
1. has deteriorated beyond its usefulness
2. can no longer be preserved in a manner that facilitates its use
3. is duplicated in the collections by a better or more representative example of records or information
4. a change in the established retention period has determined that the records do not have continuing historical value and do not warrant permanent preservation
5. a comprehensive reappraisal has determined the records do not have continuing historical value and do not warrant permanent preservation
7. Record – Information (both textual and nontextual, regardless of physical format, including electronic) created or received by a government agency in the course of business that documents a function or activity of the agency.
8. Non-record – Information (both textual and nontextual, regardless of physical format, including electronic) created or received by a government agency in the course of business but which does not document a function or activity of the agency, such as duplicate copies, plaques and awards, and transient material such as telephone messages, delivery notices, and blank forms.
9. Series -- Records having the same office or person of origin which belong together because they are part of a discernable filing system, they result from the same activity, or they are of similar formats and relate to a particular function.
10. Custody -- Records in the possession of the State Archives.
11. Printed Material – Published material including books, periodicals, and brochures.
12. Processing Discards -- Records or material received but determined during processing not to have continuing historical value, such as non-record material, file folders, envelopes, and binders.
E. The State Archives shall document receipt of records transferred into its custody by recording the agency of origination, the title of the records, date span of the records, quantity of records, and the location of the records.
F. The State Archives may remove and dispose of processing discards, non-records, duplicate printed material, and printed material that is determined not to have continuing historical value in accordance with OHS procedures.
G. The State Archives shall arrange and describe records according to standard archival practices. Record series descriptions and record inventories of each series shall be in sufficient detail to enable researchers to select the appropriate series for use and examination.
H. The State Archives shall maintain series logs, series descriptions, and series inventories for records that have been processed and prepare bibliographic records in accordance with accepted practices.
I. The State Archives shall make records in its custody available for public inspection and copy pursuant to R.C. 149.43 and 149.31(C).
J. Conservation procedures shall be applied to records that are retained in the original format following standard archival procedures.
K. The Ohio Historical Society shall insure that micrographic reproductions of its collections shall meet the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standards.
L. The State Archives may periodically review its holdings, conduct reappraisals of selected records, and propose records for deaccessioning. All proposed deaccessions shall be referred to the Head of Research Services and the Collections Management Team for their recommendations which shall be forwarded to the State Archivist and the Division Director.
M. Records approved for deaccessioning will be offered back to the agency of origination. If the agency informs the State Archives that it does not want the records returned to it, or if it fails to take possession of the records within thirty days, the records shall be destroyed in a secure manner by the State Archives or by contractual agreement with an approved vendor and witnessed by State Archives staff.
N. A record of deaccessioned material shall be maintained by the State Archives and shall include the reappraisal report, appropriate staff approvals, agency of origination response, and final method and date of disposition. Reports on deaccessioning actions shall be provided to the Society’s Chief Operating Officer and the appropriate Board of Trustees committee as actions occur.
Guidelines for offsite reference requests, see Research Requests and Copy Requests.