Admiralty: Digests and Indexes

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Details of ADM 12
Reference:ADM 12
Admiralty: Digests and Indexes

The greater part of this series consists of the Index and Digest to Admiralty In-letters, commonly called the Admiralty Digest. The index is to persons and ships; the digest itself comprises subject indexes.

Date: 1660-1974

The system in its original form (before rebinding) offered two volumes each year: the index, which gave references in alphabetical order to persons and ships; and the digest, which combined a summary and a subject index of the papers, following a system of numbered cuts which is explained in successive editions of the Table of Heads and Sections under which the Correspondence of the Admiralty Board is digested.

The volumes provide references both to each other and to the location of the original papers; the means of translating these references into The National Archives form is explained in a Reference Guide available in the reading rooms at The National Archives, Kew. The Admiralty digest was developed in the years 1806-1808, and later applied retrospectively and selectively to the papers from 1793.

At the same time a number of other indexes to correspondence of various periods, some experimental, were created, and are among the miscellaneous indexes and registers of correspondence in ADM 12/1-55. Most of these refer to records now in ADM 1 or ADM 2, but many are selective, and not all provide references which can now be keyed to the modern arrangement of those classes.

From 1915 to 1919 an increase in work made it necessary to employ two clerks simultaneously on indexing and digesting, each with his own set of volumes. During this period therefore, each section of the index and digest is in two parts and both may have to be consulted.

Related Material: The Digest provides a nominal and subject index, and also gives a summary of the contents of these papers, for:
out-letters in ADM 2
Board minutes in ADM 3
in-letters in ADM 1
Held by: The National Archives, Kew
Legal status: Public Record
Language: English
Creator: Board of Admiralty, 1708-1964
Physical description: 1911 volume(s)
Access conditions: Subject to 30 year closure
Accruals: Series is accruing

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