The National Archives Catalog

Variant Organization Name

Mandatory Repeatable Data Type Authority Public Element
No Yes Variable Character Length (700) None Yes


Definition: Familiar or commonly used designations for an organization that varies from the organization's official name.


Purpose: Allows users to search for organizations by any known name. Ensures that users are able to identify and retrieve records about a particular organization consistently, regardless of the use of common variants in the search.


Relationship: This element is dependent on Organization Name. To have Variant Organization Name, Organization Name must be created.



Enter any additional or variant name for the organization.

Use initial capital letters. End the name with a period. (Periods will be used to indicate the different hierarchical levels of a variant organization name.)

Do create a variant name for commonly used acronyms, such as "CIA" for "Central Intelligence Agency."

Do not enter Variant Organization Name unless Organization Name has been given.

Do not routinely create variant names for the common abbreviations "U.S." or Dept."

Provide explanations of variant names in Administrative History Note.




Organization Name - Department of State.
Variant Organization Name - State Department.


Organization Name - Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers.
Variant Organization Name - SCAP.


Organization Name - First United States Army.
Variant Organization Name - 1st Army.


Organization Name - Department of the Interior. Office of Indian Affairs. Commissioner to the Five Civilized Tribes.
Variant Organization Name - Dawes Commission.

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