The National Archives of Antigua and Barbuda recognizes the need to develop a broad and comprehensive collection by acquiring and preserving records of national significance in a planned and integrated manner that will enhance and promote our historical and cultural heritage. We also recognize the need to promote good governance and accountability through the establishment and maintenance of effective and economical management systems of government records.
The National Archives is the Official Archives of the Government of Antigua and Barbuda. The Archives also holds a number of small private collections. The records come in a variety of formats, including paper, parchment, maps and plans, photographs, magnetic tapes, and optical media. The Archives includes private collections but also gives guidance to government departments on the management of their records and provides advice on the preservation of records.
Official records are any records that a government department or agency has created or kept in the course of carrying out its business. They may include official files or correspondence, registers, manuals, maps, plans, photographs, or even electronic records on disk.
The Archives uses a system of appraisal to determine which records should be kept in archival custody and which can be retained by the agency that created them.
In its commitment to the preservation of government’s recorded memory, the National Archives acquires records:
- which document the deliberations, decisions and actions of government in relation to its assigned business functions, programs and activities, as well as records which establish the sovereignty, organization and administration of government;
- which provide government and the public with information about the policies, decisions and programs of government institutions over time for the purposes of review, scrutiny and understanding;
- which document the impact of government decision-making upon citizens and groups in Antigua and Barbuda and the interaction between the public and the state;
- that are considered essential to protect the collective and individual rights and privileges of citizens and their social, cultural and physical environment;
- of national significance containing significant or unique information that will substantially enrich understanding about the Antigua and Barbuda’s history, society, culture and people; and
- that the Government of Antigua and Barbuda is required to maintain for a substantial period of time by law.
To these ends, the Archives collects records received and maintained by
- the Office of the Prime Minister and of Cabinet
- any Ministry, Department, Commission, Committee, office and other body under the Government of Antigua and Barbuda
- Any post representing the Government of Antigua and Barbuda outside the country
- The Antigua and Barbuda Defence Force and Royal Antigua and Barbuda Police Force
- Parliament or Electoral Commission
- Court of Appeal, High Court or any Court or tribunal with jurisdiction within Antigua and Barbuda
- District or municipal authorities
- Public Corporations and parastatal organizations
- Predecessor or successor institutions to the ones already listed
- Records of Governors-General, Prime Ministers, Ministers of Government, Judges of the High Court whose records complement the official record.
As well as
- Private records created by a person, family or a corporate body.
- Collections of records from a variety of sources acquired for a specific purpose or use
- Discrete items where the actual intrinsic or historical value of the record is great enough to merit its long-term preservation.
- Records discovered and confiscated in the process of illegal exportation from Antigua and Barbuda.