Historians use archives extensively in their research and are increasingly using digitized archives and other digital humanities resources.
It is surprising, then, to discover that the United States government is still using low-tech archival methods to keep track of firearms purchases and track down guns that have been used in crimes.
There is no federal database of firearms purchases, so connecting firearms with criminals is apparently a painstaking task, involving sifting by hand through mountains of paper records.
NPR reports on the methods used by federal officials who search for records of guns used in crimes.
Researchers and students working on digital archives and information techniques will be interested in this story.