Arizona Archives Online
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What is Arizona Archives Online (AAO)?
Arizona Archives Online brings together detailed descriptions of archival material about the history of Arizona and other subjects. The archival collections described in AAO are held at institutions across the state including academic libraries, historical institutions, special collections libraries, museums and other libraries and archives in Arizona.
AAO Annual Reports
2015-16 Fiscal Year
2014-15 Fiscal Year
2013-14 Fiscal Year
AAO Strategic Plans
2015-16 Fiscal Year
2014-15 Fiscal Year
Arizona Archives Online Steering Committee
  • Elizabeth Dunham, Arizona State University
  • Laura Keller, Arizona State Library, History and Archives Division
  • Alexis Peregoy, Center for Creative Photography
  • Lisa Duncan, University of Arizona
Want to join AAO?
Please review the AAO Bylaws and our standard Letter of Intent and contact for additional information. A copy of the AAO Best Practices may be obtained online. The AAO Best Practices readme document gives each institutional member the ability to customize the AAO generic ead template with their specific MARC code and contact information.
AAO Contributing Members
There are currently 14 institutions throughout the state of Arizona that contribute content to Arizona Archives Online:
  • The Arizona Historical Society: Northern Division
  • Arizona State Library, History and Archives Division
  • Arizona State Museum
  • Arizona State University Libraries, Department of Archives and Special Collections
  • Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Aviation Safety and Security Archives, Prescott Campus
  • Heard Museum Billie Jane Baguley Library and Archives
  • Lowell Observatory Library and Archives
  • Museum of Northern Arizona
  • Northern Arizona University, Cline Library Special Collections and Archives
  • Peggy J. Slusser Memorial Philatelic Library
  • Sharlot Hall Museum
  • University of Arizona Library Special Collections
  • University of Arizona Libraries. Arizona Health Sciences Library
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ):
What is Archival Description?
Archival description is the practice of describing and sometimes indexing the content of archival documents or archival collections. Products of archival description include library catalog records, repository guides, collection guides (often known as finding aids), websites and specialized databases. Arizona Archives Online is a website that contains searchable finding aids.
What is in a finding aid?
A finding aid is a description of a collection of archival materials. It describes who created the materials, and when, as well as the type of materials, the topics of the collection, how it is organized and why it is significant. The depth of description of an archival collection contained within a finding aid will vary based on local institutional policies and the discretion of the archivist processing the collection.
Why are the collections in Arizona Archives Online not digitized?
Digitization of content on AAO is left to the discretion of the contributing members to the AAO website. Due to funding, digitization resources, copyright restrictions, and staff time many archival holdings described on AAO are not digitized. Some of the collections described on AAO do have links to digitized content. These digital items can be found either linked to local servers or to other digital instances on the internet. Arizona Archives Online was designed to provide digitized content as it becomes available at the discretion of the contributing members. Contact AAO at to inquire as to any future efforts by participating members to digitize specific content.
I am a representative from an Arizona institution, how can I join AAO?
To join AAO, your institution must have descriptions of archival holdings that are ready to go online. AAO staff will help you with coding your descriptive content into Encoded Archival Description (EAD) and placing it online. Contact AAO at for more information.
Other local and national web sites for electronic archival description include: