The National Archives Catalog

Container List

Mandatory Repeatable Data Type Authority Level Available A/V Only Public Element
No No Variable Character Length
None Series No Yes


Definition: The listing of the starting and ending titles of the contents of each container in which the archival materials are stored.


Purpose: Indicates the range of archival materials within each container. Enables users to decide which containers to request for viewing.


Relationship: This element is dependent on Copy Status. Each copy of the archival materials must have a copy status specified to have Container List.



Enter the starting title and ending title of the contents of each container. Separate each container entry with a line break. List the container, followed by a colon and one space, before the title of the contents. Do not list all of the contents of the container, and do not include narrative annotations.

Usually, container list information is transcribed exactly as it appears on the container. If the information contains acronyms, best practice is to spell out the acronym in brackets after the acronym. Describers are encouraged, but not required, to do this.


Box 1: ACOG [Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games] - Buckhead


Bound Volumes
Bound volumes are treated as individual containers and, as such, the starting and ending titles or pages may be listed here.

Container List vs. File Unit Level Descriptions
Only enter the start and end of the contents in each container. Do not enter all the folder titles in each container. To create a complete list of folder titles, each folder may be described individually at the File Unit Level.

Container List (data element) vs. Container List (Finding Aid Type)
The term "container list" is used twice in this document. As a data element, Container List should be used to actually indicate the range of archival materials within the containers. As a term in the Finding Aid Type Authority List, "Container List" can be selected to indicate the existence of a container list in addition to the current description. In that case, Finding Aid Note can inform users where to find the container list.




Volume 1: A - D
Volume 2: E - H
Volume 3: I - N
Volume 4: O - Z


Box 1: Correspondence: ca. 1914 -- 1939/1940
Box 2: Correspondence: 1941 -- 1954


Box 1: Atlases - Bird Songs
Box 2: Bird Songs - Bird Songs
Box 3: Bitter Root - Bivalves


Box 6787: PRO-M-1-4101 - 4200 to PRO-M-1-5801 - 5900
Box 6788: PRO-M-1-5901 - 6000 to PRO-M-1-7001 - 7100
Box 6789: PRO-M-1-7101 - 7200 to PRO-S-1-701 - 800
Box 6790: PRO-S-1-801 - 900 to PRO-S-1-2701 - 2800

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