The Archives of the Center for Holocaust, Human Rights & Genocide Education (Chhange) at Brookdale Community College in Lincroft, New Jersey, is a repository for original materials that document the Holocaust, genocides and human rights abuses, as witnessed by the local community within New Jersey. The Archives also serves as a repository for official and unofficial records which document the origin and development of Chhange since its founding in 1979, as the first Holocaust Studies center in the state of New Jersey. The purpose of the Archives is to collect, preserve, and make these materials available to administrators, faculty, students, alumni and other members of the College community, as well as scholars, authors, and other interested persons who seek to understand the causes, processes, and effects of genocide and human rights abuses on local, national, and international communities.
Chhange’s mission is to:
- educate about the Holocaust, genocide and human rights
- promote the elimination of all forms of prejudice
- develop creative programs regarding these crucial human issues
To assist Chhange with its mission, the Archives and its archival staff:
- Appraise, collect, organize, describe, preserve, and make available materials from survivors and witnesses regarding genocide and human rights abuses. These materials are from members of Chhange’s community, which consists of Chhange’s volunteer base, members and supporters, and current or past residents of Monmouth County and the surrounding areas
- Appraise, collect, organize, describe, preserve, and make available records of historical, legal, fiscal and/or administrative value to Chhange
- Provide information services that will assist the operation of Chhange
- Serve as a resource to foster and cultivate creative teaching and learning
- Aid in research and scholarship by making available and encouraging the use of its collections by members of the College and all other interested persons
- Promote knowledge and understanding of the origins, aims, programs, and goals of Chhange, and of the development of these aims, goals, and programs
- Interact with institutions whose mission is similar to the Chhange’s or the Archives’ in order to promote shared aims, goals, and programs
Aside from maintaining the institutional records of Chhange, the Archives also preserves and makes available materials related to genocidal actions and human rights violations. We strive to collect unique materials, which help convey the personal stories of those who have survived and/or witnessed atrocities. Our collections include materials such as:
- Artifacts: railroad spikes, buttons, cookware, suitcases, clothing, table linens
- Artwork: paintings, pen-and-pencil sketches, children's drawings, sculptures
- Audio: oral histories, musical scores
- Books: educational, from the time period
- Correspondence: letters, postcards, telegraphs
- Diaries: before, during, and after atrocities
- Documents: identification cards, passports, work permits, personal papers
- Ephemera: currency, playbills, invitations
- Journals: academic, hobby
- Manuscripts: unpublished print materials
- Memoirs: particular events, an era, an entire lifetime
- Newsprint: camp newsletters, military newsletters, special editions
- Photographs: before, during, and after atrocities
- Video: oral histories, educational programming, speeches
The Archives will gladly consider material not listed above so long as it pertains to our Mission Statement.
The Archives accepts acquisitions from members of the community, as defined in the Mission Statement. The Archives actively seeks most of its collections. However, the majority of the collections are gifts from donors and not purchases. Prior to sending unsolicited donations, we encourage donors to contact the Archives. Unsolicited donations will be subject to review on the basis of the aforementioned criteria. The Archives may acquire material that is not inherently unique but whose research value results from it being part of a larger collection.
All donors to the Archives of the Center for Holocaust, Human Rights & Genocide Education of Brookdale Community College will be expected to complete and sign a Deed of Gift.
Donations of historical material to a public research facility may be tax deductible. However, the Archives cannot appraise donations for tax purposes. For the protection of the donor, it is recommended that such appraisals be done by an independent third party and before title to the material is conveyed to the Archives.
Retention and Deaccession
The Archives may digitize, microfilm, or otherwise reformat donated collections for preservation purposes. In these cases, the original material may be kept by the Archives, sent to off-site storage, or removed from the collection. Usually, donated archival materials are considered extremely important and are intended to be kept permanently. However, no individual or institution can predict or govern the changing attitudes of future generations, nor guarantee permanency beyond the best available preservation procedures. The Archives reserves the right to reevaluate historical material and to carefully and judiciously deaccession and dispose of certain items from its collection in a manner consistent with professionally accepted standards. The Archives may decide to deaccession an item if any of the following conditions are present:
- The item is not relevant to neither Chhange's nor the Archives’s mission and purpose
- The item would be more appropriately housed in a different archival repository
- The item has deteriorated beyond its usefulness
- The item is made of hazardous materials or is actively decomposing in a manner that directly affects the condition of other items and/or the health and safety of the staff and/or visitors
- The Archives is unable to continue to provide care and storage for the object in keeping with professionally accepted standards
- The item’s care and storage are far more expensive than the value of the object as it relates to the Archives mission and purpose
- The item may be replaced with a similar object of greater significance, quality, or better condition
- The item is subject to legal and ethical standards requiring its removal. Deaccessioned collections and items weeded from collections during processing, due to duplication, irrelevance, limited use, or deterioration, will be offered to the original donor or his agent if so requested at the time of donation. If the donor wishes not to reclaim the material or cannot be located, the Archives reserves the right to offer the material to other depositories or discard the items. The Archivist must approve any material declared expendable.
Complete records will be maintained on all deaccessioned items and their subsequent disposition. A deaccessioned item may be disposed of in one of the following methods (in order of decreasing desirability):
- Transfer to another more appropriate archival repository related to genocide or human rights
- Donation to an appropriate archives or scholarly institution not related to genocide or human rights
- Return to the original donor
- Destruction of the item
The Archives recognizes the rights of donors to impose reasonable restrictions on materials to protect privacy and confidentiality, although donors are strongly encouraged to grant literary rights to the Archives. Restrictions and conditions with regards to access and use are determined at the time of donation and noted on the Deed of Gift. The Archives, Chhange, and Brookdale Community College can assume no responsibility for abuse of literary or copyright restrictions by users of research materials.
Once a collection is properly preserved, organized, and described, it will be made available for research to any qualified scholar upon approval of the Chhange’s Executive Director, Archivist, or his/her appointee. Patrons will be supervised throughout the duration of their research by an associate of Chhange, who is trained in the correct handling of archival materials. Patrons must complete the “Archival Researcher Agreement” prior to research. Appointments for research and facility tours must be made five business days prior to the desired appointment time, and the Archives reserves the right to refuse service if this deadline is not met by the patron.
The Archives will loan its collections to individuals and institutions in order to help fulfill the mission of Chhange and/or the Archives. All loans will be authorized by Chhange’s Executive Director and borrowers must complete the “Loan Agreement for Archival Records” prior to receiving a decision on the loan.
Chhange educates, inspires, and empowers individuals to stand up to injustice.