This blog primarily offers advice and personal reflections that will be useful for people embarking on archival research in a variety of settings, including: public record offices, university and college libraries, large public libraries, and private institutional libraries such as convent and diocesan archives in the UK, USA, France and Belgium. I also have some advice on how to gain access to private holdings. There will be plenty of useful tips for beginners ranging from academics to family historians to enthusiasts, and, hopefully, some observations and anecdotes that will chime with the experiences of more seasoned archive-users.
Snakeweight does not prescribe particular methodologies, but does describe those used by me on my archival adventures. I have found modern technologies—such as digital photography and the web—to have a profound influence on the way I conduct my archival research. But, as the name of this blog suggests, older technologies are crucial to my work. I have made mistakes and learned from them, and have developed techniques I find useful and want to share with others.
Snakeweight also offers reflections on the academic job market; hosting and attending academic events, such as conferences and seminars; the trials and triumphs of publication; and collaborating with other researchers and institutions.