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Overview

The Pan-American Institute of Geography and History (IPGH), a specialized arm of the Organization of American States located in Mexico City, holds a vast collection of microfilms of important historical materials that are held in national archives and libraries throughout Latin America.

The original documents, filmed in the 1950s and 1960s as part of a preservation project sponsored by UNESCO, include priceless and rare materials dealing with the history and cultural heritage of Barbados, Chile, Honduras, Paraguay, Peru and the Dominican Republic. Documents in the collection include minutes of government meetings, texts of speeches, historic newspapers and magazines, government gazettes, legal documents, personal papers, municipal records, diaries and journals, church archives, genealogies and early histories. Most materials date from the 16th to the 19th centuries.

Each set is available separately:

  • Barbados
    These materials were filmed in 1960 from the collection at the Public Library of Bridgetown, Barbados. A few supplemental materials came from other institutions and private sources.
  • Chile
    Documents included in this collection were filmed from holdings in the National Library (Biblioteca Nacional) of Chile.
  • Dominican Republic
    These documents were filmed at the Archivo General de la Nación (National Archives) and the Archivo de la Catedral (Cathedral Archives). More than 150,000 pages in total were microfilmed.
  • Honduras
    Filming of this material took place at the National Archive of Honduras.
  • Panama
    This major collection of historical and literary materials dating from the 16th to the 19th centuries covers Panama both as a province of Colombia and as a republic.
  • Paraguay; Serie Historica 1536-1870 and Serie Nueva Encuadermacion
    UNESCO filmed over 400 volumes in Paraguay. Most of the materials came from the National Archive. Additional materials came from the Fondo Nueva Encuadernación and the Biblioteca Solano López.
  • Peru
    These materials were filmed in four different institutions: the Archivo del Arzobispado, the Archivo Histórico Municipal de Lima, the Archivo Nacional de Perú and the Archivo Nacional Sección Notarial y Judicial.

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