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Placing the Tools and Materials of Research in “Other Hands”

Placing the Tools and Materials of Research in “Other Hands”

(p.100) (p.101) Chapter FivePlacing the Tools and Materials of Research in “Other Hands”
History's Babel
Robert B. Townsend
University of Chicago Press

Between 1910 and 1925, the American Historical Association (AHA) began to show a keen interest in the work of other historical institutions. Subtle changes in professional resources and networks affected the relationship between academics and the specialists employed in other areas of the historical enterprise. By 1925, history graduate students increasingly saw the societies as a legitimate area of employment. The AHA’s Public Archives Commission and Conference of Archivists came up with a series of reports that provided some of the core professionalization literature for the succeeding generations of historians. With an eye towards stronger cooperation, historical organizations reorganized the Conference of Historical Societies in 1916, transforming it into a “semi-independent organization” within the AHA. However, the AHA would see a reduced role in providing leadership for the professional concerns of historical societies, archives, and related organizations.

Keywords:   historical enterprise, history, American Historical Association, Public Archives Commission, Conference of Archivists, professionalization, cooperation, historical organizations, Conference of Historical Societies, archives

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