Documenting Your Collections
Info-Muse Network Documentation Guide

Les guides électroniques de la SMQ

Acknowledgements for the first edition

(The original text of the acknowledgements by Françoise Simard, at the time a documentalist-registrar, in the first edition of the guide, published in 1992.)

It would not have been possible to produce this guide without the collaboration of many organizations and experts.

Let me start by thanking the members of the Info-Muse Network documentation subcommittee, who gave of their time and agreed to lend their expertise to the Info-Muse Network: France Lévesque, museum consultant with CHIN, Lise Nadeau, registrar with the Musée du Québec, Paul-Aimé Lacroix, registrar with the Canadian Parks Service, Michel Laurent, registrar with the Musée de la civilisation, Jean-Paul Viaud, registrar with the David M. Stewart Museum, and Serge Parent, scientific advisor with the Montréal Biodôme.

Three experts were kind enough to look at the archaeology aspects of the guide: Marc Beauregard, archaeologist, Jean-Guy Brossard, archaeologist with Pointe-à-Callière, and Renée Laroche, head of inventory with the Pointe-du-Buisson archaeological park.

For the section on natural sciences, in addition to Serge Parent, Erin Cosgrove, a museum consultant with CHIN, and Louise LePage, a collections management consultant, agreed to validate the guide.

The two classification systems resulted from close co-operation among many individuals and institutions. Paul-Aimé Lacroix and Michel Laurent, mentioned above, served as documentation experts in setting up the classification system for history, ethnology and archaeology. Aside from Lise Nadeau and France Lévesque, Madeleine Lafaille, co-ordinator of computerized documentation at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, and Danielle Lord, registrar with the Musée d'art de Joliette, played a similar role in developing the classification system for fine arts and decorative arts.

Throughout the project, Danielle Boily, head of museum consulting services with CHIN, and Nicole Vallières, registrar with the McCord Museum of Canadian History, provided me with valuable advice. Dominique Potvin, cataloguer-researcher with the Musée du Québec, kindly agreed to examine a number of thorny questions relating to documentation. Marie-Claude Saïa, co-ordinator of photographic services with the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, allowed me to use the numbering system for photographic documents developed at the MMFA.

Three organizations were particularly helpful by authorizing us to use their documents. Richard Gauthier, Chief Curator of the Canadian Parks Service, allowed us to use their classification system.1 Our classification system for history, ethnology and historical archaeology museums is largely based on it. The Musée du Québec permitted us to use its own classification system, as the basis for the Info-Muse classification system for fine arts and decorative arts museums. The Musée was also very helpful when we were preparing the document on measuring objects. CHIN allowed us to make use of the Data Dictionary as the foundation for this guide.

Three museums gave us valuable assistance by using the preliminary version of this guide to document part of their collections. The experiences of the Centre d'histoire de Montréal, the Musée du Séminaire de Sherbrooke and the Stanstead Historical Society, all of them pilot institutions for the Network, enabled us to make indispensable corrections to the final version of the guide.

Many professionals worked on putting this guide together: Éric Serre, for the graphic design, Anne Cloutier, Jean-Pierre Leroux and Yannick Morin for the revision and correction of the text and Dominique Péladeau for the computer graphics.

My colleagues on the Info-Muse Network team also deserve thanks for their day-to-day support: Christian Trudel, programmer-analyst, for his extensive technical advice, and Chantal Tessier, secretary, for her considerable work on inputting the document.

Finally, Danièle Brochu, head and co-ordinator of the Network, lent me her support throughout the project. Without her energy and commitment, this guide would never have come to be.

Lastly, we wish to thank all the other individuals and organizations who participated in any way in producing this guide—a shining example of the spirit of mutual assistance that reigns among the institutions of the Quebec museum network

  1. Canadian Parks Service Classification System for Historical Collections, Environment Canada, Parks Service, preliminary version, March 1992. © Société des musées du Québec