The Scottish Archive
Network (SCAN) is a project whose partners are the National Archives of Scotland
(NAS), the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), and the Genealogical Society of Utah (GSU).
The project has begun the digitisation and indexing of Scottish historical records
on a huge scale in order to preserve the original records and to make digital
surrogates more widely available.
Between 2000 and 2004 SCAN digitised
all 520,000 surviving wills and testaments registered in Scottish commissary courts
and sheriff courts between 1500 and 1901: in total more than 2 million images.
These have been linked to a single index compiled by SCAN using earlier incomplete
indexes and partly from scratch. The index can be searched for free and the images
viewed for free at the National Archives of Scotland. In addition the index can
be searched for free on the ScotlandsPeople website at http://www.scotlandspeople.gov.uk,
where images can also be purchased by credit card.
From 2004 onwards
SCAN is concentrating on the digitisation of Scotland's kirk session and presbytery
records: church court records from every parish in Scotland. The digitisation
alone will require more than 4 years' work.
SCANhas also digitised a
variety of records from many of its 52 participating archives. Some are used in
exhibitions and transcription projects by the archives themselves, while others
are gradually being added to SCAN's Digital
was important that the digitisation project paid due regard to preservation concerns.
For more information about the SCAN project's methods of selection and assessment
of material, preparation and pagination, handling training for camera operators,
image capture and quality, data back up, and image resilience see our page on
Managing Quality. You can also
read our conservation
report and our digital
imaging standards report.