Minnesota Methods: Rethinking Appraisal at the Minnesota Historical Society

  • Kathryn Hujda (Minnesota Historical Society)


The Minnesota Historical Society’s struggle to provide timely access to the large amount of materials it acquires has been well-documented in archival literature. Methodologies such as MPLP and the Minnesota Method, conceived by archivists while employed by the Minnesota Historical Society, were both conceptualized in response to an expansive documentary universe with limited institutional resources.

Despite the wide-ranging impacts of MPLP and the Minnesota Method on the profession, the Minnesota Historical Society has continued to struggle to match its resources to its large collecting purview. By 2019, this dissonance has contributed to an accessioning backlog of approximately 3,000 linear feet of materials with very little physical or intellectual control.

In recognition of this ongoing dissonance, curatorial staff have been reassessing the Minnesota Historical Society’s approach to appraisal. This poster will introduce a working draft of the institution’s revised appraisal criteria in conversation with methodologies put forth by Mark A. Greene, Dennis Meissner, and Todd J. Daniels-Howell, and as well as new approaches to appraisal and accessioning developed by archivists such as Thomas Hyry, Diane Kaplan, and Christine Weideman. The poster will also provide examples of tools created in order to consistently apply the new appraisal criteria and outline next steps for applying the criteria to backlogged collections.

How to Cite:

Hujda, K., (2021) “Minnesota Methods: Rethinking Appraisal at the Minnesota Historical Society”, MAC Annual Meeting Presentations 2021(1).



Published on
14 May 2021
Minnesota Methods: Rethinking Appraisal at the Minnesota Historical Society