About

Updated 18 December 2016

This site lists historical and genealogical publications by Claire Kluskens, a senior reference and projects archivist at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), Washington, DC.

Claire served as Registrar (1996-98) and as a Director (1998-2000) on the National Genealogical Society Board of Directors. She attended the National Institute on Genealogical Research in 1994 and has spoken at NIGR, NGS, FGS, and elsewhere.

Why name this site The Twelve Key? In the days of yore, each archivist at the National Archives was issued a metal key with the number 12 engraved upon it. This key provided access to all the unclassified stacks where records were held. Obviously this key has long since been replaced by other security devices. And no, I have no idea for what keys 1 through 11 might have been used.

The articles on this site provide intellectual knowledge that enable the reader to access archival records. Thus it seemed fittingly symbolic to choose “12 key” for its name.

The green color is a few shades lighter than the olive drab green originally painted on stack doors, shelves, and so forth, that is still seen in many locations throughout the National Archives Building.

Outdated posts will be removed from this site when appropriate.

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