NC Web Archives Tips for Searching: Archive-It

Welcome to the Web Archives Tips for Searching tutorial series. The North Carolina State Government Web Site Archive and Access program is a resource from the State Archives and the State Library, sister agencies of the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources. Searching the web archive is easy! To start, go to In the center of the page are two search bars. The top bar searches against North Carolina’s collection of state agency websites and social media sites captured in Archive-It. The bottom bar conducts more in-depth searching of a select number of state agency social media accounts and messaging content as captured by ArchiveSocial. Suppose you were interested in finding the websites and social media accounts for the North Carolina State Fair. Type “State Fair” in the top search bar, and click search. The search results will list the website and social media account pages captured by Archive-It which contain your search terms. You can narrow search results on the left side of the page by subject, creator, URL, or other filters. In the middle of the page we can see there are seven websites relating to the state fair. If I wanted to view the state fair’s website, I would scroll down and click on the URL in the search results. I am then redirected to a page with a series of years and dates. Each date is a capture of that specific website collected by the web archive on that day. Dates with asterisks indicate that a website was probably updated and new information was captured by the web archive. Clicking on a date will take you to the captured website. At the top of each archived page is a banner that explains you are on an archived page from a specific time and date. To see the same page on a different date, click on the “All versions” link in the banner. You can navigate through the archived website as you would normally. However, the dates of capture in the banner may change as you navigate through the site. This is because only new data from websites are saved. So even if you wanted to view a page from 2011, it may still have the same data from 2010, and you will see the page as it was captured in 2010 because the crawl did not find any new content in 2011. Going back to our search results. If I am more interested in mentions about the state fair on a web page, I would click on the tab titled “Search Page Text.” Archive-It will search all the web pages in the North Carolina Government archive collection that contain the “state fair” search term on a website. You can see that doing this search provides more than 6 million results. By clicking on a title in these results, I am led directly to the page in which my search term appears. Thank you for watching this segment in the Web Archives Tips for Searching tutorial series. We hope you enjoy searching North Carolina’s rich collection of digital and web based content. For more tips on how to search the web archives, continue with the other videos in this series. But, please feel free to contact us if you still have trouble accessing the web archive or have any questions.

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