What we loosely call archives actually come in a variety of types.
- The term archives usually implies a collection of historical documents or records providing information about a place, institution, or group of people. The term is most often applied to institutional or business records. Though we call it a collection, the Don Bluth Collection of Animation is more accurately an archive.
- Manuscripts are properly defined as handwritten or typed documents, but now commonly refer to unpublished personal papers or author's papers, regardless of how they were produced. Manuscript collections often contain correspondence, various drafts of publications, and diaries or journals.
- Collection is a term that implies a group of objects or other items that have been assembled for study, comparison, exhibition, or as a hobby. Collections can come from a single collector, such as a collection of books or art, or an institution, such as a museum.
- In the library and archives world, often materials are gathered by the archivist from various sources to make a collection on a specific topic that would aid in research. These are referred to as artificial collections, and could include ephemera and memorabilia.
Below, cataloged collections have been arranged topically.