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Press Release
December 14, 2005

National Archives Partners with the National Coalition for History to Identify Missing or Stolen Records

Washington, DC…On November 19, 2005 the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) and the National Coalition for History (NCH) created a pilot project which will authorize the NCH to search auction and sales web sites, listings, and catalogs to identify missing or stolen federal, state, local, or international government records. Once identified, these documents will be brought to the attention of the appropriate repository, which will decide whether to seek recovery, through replevin or other legal means.

"I am pleased that the National Archives is partnering with the National Coalition for History on this critical issue," Archivist of the United States Allen Weinstein stated yesterday. "It is imperative that the entire historical and archival community remain vigilant in identifying and reclaiming materials that have been stolen from our nation's repositories. This agreement is a step forward in helping the National Archives recover unique historical documents that we hold in trust for our citizens."

Other actions that the National Archives has taken to protect and recover historical records besides the NCH/NARA partnership include: launching the "Recover Lost and Stolen Documents" Web pages (http://www.archives.gov/research/recover/) which lists missing records; hosting a meeting of international institutions to discuss issues of document security; placement of additional security controls in National Archives research rooms nationwide; publishing of a pamphlet to educate the public about how to identify Federal documents, and giving public recognition to individuals who help the National Archives recover alienated documents.

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For press information contact the National Archives Public Affairs Staff at 202-357-5300.

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