Organizing and preserving one’s own history

Organizing and preserving one's own history

Messis and immaculate ones – there are not only in the private sector, but also in municipalities, as well as the whole range in between. In the case of municipalities, it concerns the handling of important records, documents and files. They have to be properly sifted, sorted and systematically stored. Not everyone gets it right. Although this has even been regulated by law since the end of 1990, archives must preserve important documents for posterity.

But that is easier said than done, says district archivist barbara spies. Barbara spies has been an honorary archivist for the village of lein since 2004 and helps municipalities with their archives. Previously, from 1997 to 2007, philipp hummer from bischberg was the district archivist. Barbara spies sums up the last 14 years: "quite a bit has been done in the area of archives, but not enough and not across the board.

From a technical point of view, the district archivist reports to the state archives (bamberg), where roland haslauer is the responsible officer. While attending a conference, the two came across an innovative model that could facilitate the handling or development of archives in the district of bamberg as well. In the district of regensburg, there is an "association for municipal archives".

The purpose of this association is to promote and further develop the care of municipal archives. This approach was presented to the municipalities at a mayoral service meeting. With a positive response. For this reason, such an association is now to be set up in the district of bamberg, based on the regensburg model, as renate kuhhorn, head of the culture and sports department at the district administration office in bamberg, explains, which also includes looking after the archives and thus appointing an archivist every five years.

Hallstadt is probably the municipality that has employed its own registrar and archivist for the longest period of time. Concretely since 1992. Silvia kohler has worked for the city administration since 1981 and can remember the times when this was not the case. "That was a bit circumstantial." Nowadays, kohler has been working in the cashier’s office for many years, he says, i it’s easy to look things up.

What needs to be looked up at all, we ask hallstadt chamberlain markus pflaum. Lots and lots of totally different areas. From his area of responsibility, the question arose during the audit as to whether a specific matter had already been audited earlier. He had been of the opinion that this was the case. In the well-ordered registry, it was easy to see that pflaum was right. The bottom line is that the administration saves a lot of time that would otherwise have been spent looking for a new home.

To ensure that everyone can quickly access the necessary documents, the person in charge of the registry and the archive must also be appropriately trained, as the district archivist makes clear. There are three courses that build on each other, and attendance is usually paid for by the municipalities. In principle, anyone can attend such a course, one should be interested in history and preferably be able to read the old german script.

The "municipal archive care" association will maintain specialized staff, and make it available to municipalities without their own archivist in a flexible way. Members pay a basic fee of 852.55 euros per year and 119.37 euros per half day booked (four working hours). These are the prices that could be taken from the regensburg model.

According to renate kuhhorn, the basic contribution is used to cover administrative costs, travel expenses and other general costs, while the additional contribution is used to pass on personnel costs to the members.

According to spies and kuhhorn, the municipalities of breitengubbach, burgwindheim, buttenheim, hirschaid, kemmern, memmelsdorf, pettstadt, pommersfelden, priesendorf, scheblitz, schonbrunn, stegaurach, walsdorf, and zapfendorf as well as the administrative communities of lisberg and steinfeld have expressed interest in the association. The draft of the statutes has already been drawn up, the district committee has approved the foundation of the association, and the district of bamberg itself will become a member.

Michael zappacosta is an administrative employee of the city of hallstadt. As such, he is a qualified librarian, but is responsible exclusively for the registry and the archives. A unique selling point for him and the city.

Whoever wants to get hold of important documents, has to deal with them. This concerns the employees of the administration, who mainly want to look something up in younger documents and thus in the registry. The archive, on the other hand, is more likely to be used by schools, associations or interested pensioners. Only in special cases were citizens allowed to see what concerned them in the registry.

While zappacosta’s desk is in the chamber, his treasures are down in the basement. Secured several times with locks and also chains. The oldest document dates back to 1806.

29 walls

In addition, the rolling shelving system with its multiple 29 walls houses everything important for hallstadt: units incorporated in the archive 1800, i.E. Subject complexes. In the registry there are 2500 ready arranged folders and then again about 2000 "in transition", according to zappacosta. That is, here it is to decide whether their content moves to the archive, or "cashiered", so is destroyed. After the retention periods have expired and according to the four-eyes principle.

"In case of doubt, however." Most people look in documents from the building office – zoning plans, land use plans. But there are also inquiries from the main office, concerning city council meetings, but also mayor’s speeches and the like. Mayor thomas soder is very happy about this well-functioning service in his house. But also associations appreciate the well-organized archives, for example, when they want to research something about anniversaries. Schoolchildren also come again and again. Jungst had the archivpfleger a case, in which it concerned the einemeindungsvertrag with dorfleins.


The bavarian archives law (bayarchivg) regulates since the 1. January 1990 the archiving of documents in the state archives and in archives of other public bodies in bavaria…

It defines the terms "archivgut" and "archivwurdig", specifies the tasks of the state archives in bavaria, regulates the deployment of honorary archivists, obliges the bavarian authorities to offer their documents to the state archives and regulates the takeover of the documents. It includes provisions for contract archiving and the management and safeguarding of archival property. …It regulates,… Who may use a state archive and under what conditions, when use is to be prohibited, and how long archived material is blocked (protection periods). (source: wikipedia).