One of the founding
principals of the Clan Cameron Association, convened over 110 years ago in
Edinburgh, was "reviving, conserving and promoting the interests,
associations and relations of the clan." While Clan Cameron
Online, in its role of the Association's Chartered Electronic Branch, has
participated in the reviving and promotion of the clan, in addition to
fostering relations of the clan via the Internet, we have been at a loss
as to how to go about electronically conserving Cameron documents.
In early 2001 we commenced
efforts to acquire unique, valued pieces of content - clan-related
documents, namely poetry, lore, songs, correspondence, news stories, maps,
artwork, photographs, transcriptions of speeches and other relevant
documents. Our initial goal, of providing fifty such documents at
the time of the Clan Cameron Archives' "launch" (January 1,
2002) was met. Due to the efforts of Camerons from many nations, the
Archives have grown into a new and exciting part of Clan Cameron Online.
Content is continually being submitted
for inclusion, based on certain criteria.
By no means is this a
finished project! Our goal of building the Archives is a continuing
one. We now have the web storage space necessary for preserving
hundreds, if not perhaps one thousand or more such items, to create
something unique within the circles of clan associations worldwide.
Why preserve these items
and offer them via the Internet - what is our "Mission?" In
addition to concerns that paper-based documents have a limited
"life," there are other important reasons for these Archives.
First and foremost, this electronic collection is being openly
offered to Camerons and those interested in the Clan Cameron via the
Internet. This effort saves the casual reader and students of
history from having to seek out these items, an effort that in many
instances would be difficult or impossible. For those attempting
serious research, whether for a thesis or publication citing items from
the Archives, the source record for these items has been listed (when
known, usually in the "Editor's Notes" section at the end of
each text-based item.) Armed with this information research many be
taken to the next step, whether at a myriad of libraries, institutions or
in the Reading Room of the Clan
Cameron Museum, where many additional unique publications await
inspection. The other reason for the existence of these Archives
harkens back to the founding mission of the Clan Cameron Association, as
stated above, "reviving, conserving and promoting the interests,
associations and relations of the clan." It is hoped that
Camerons, those descended from Cameron ancestors and those from our many
sept families will delight in the reading and viewing of this virtual
collection. Perhaps they will elect to take that interest with them
into the Clan Cameron Association. Only by making our proud heritage
readily available to would-be members and enthusiasts will future
generations of Camerons continue with the desire to become active
participants in the Clan Cameron Association.
In short, our Mission is:
unrestricted and open access to the electronically archived records of the
Clan Cameron; celebrating the past, sharing in the present and conserving
for the future."