Acquisition of personal fonds
The Masaryk Institute and Archives of the CAS is an accredited specialised archive whose task is the comprehensive care of documents of permanent value. Its work consists of collecting and processing archival collections that document the activities of the Czech Academy of Sciences and its predecessors (in addition to the Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences, these include the Czech Academy of Sciences and Arts, the Royal Bohemian Society of Sciences and the Masaryk Academy of Labour). An equally important group of collections consists of the written legacies of scientists active in the Czech Republic, such as the papers of Nobel Prize winner Jaroslav Heyrovský or Otto Wichterle. Of particular importance are the personal holdings of Tomáš G. Masaryk and Edvard Beneš. The archive contains 345 personal fonds totalling 1,797 linear metres.
The personal archival fonds are created and replenished through acquisition activities. The selection of archives from private originators (scientists, scientific societies and associations) is carried out outside the shredding procedure. Personal archives come to the archives directly from the originators or their heirs by donation, bequest, purchase or bequest. The deposit of documents is covered by a donation or purchase contract, which includes a protocol on the selection and receipt of documents and an inventory of the archives taken over. The contract may specify the conditions for access to the archives (according to the wishes of the donor or the recommendation of the archives). The archive accepts documents of personalities and associations, as a rule, for permanent storage or as a depository (i.e. for safekeeping, while retaining the original ownership).
Specialist archivists not only assess, take over and contract the selection of personal archives, but also offer consultations for those considering depositing their documents in a cultural and scientific institution. A priority of our systematic acquisition activity is the acquisition of the written remains of scientists professionally associated with the Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences, the Czech Academy of Sciences, as well as with scientific societies and associations.
The archive carries out a uniform registration of the acquired documents, their processing and access to researchers in accordance with the relevant laws and other standards. The legal deadline for the study of archival documents is 30 years from the death of the originator of the documents, unless otherwise stipulated by contract.