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National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation (NCTR) introduces new website and AtoM database

After many months of collaborative work, Artefactual is thrilled to see the launch of the NCTR website and AtoM-based archives database this week.

The NCTR archives consists of more than five million records, most gathered by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada during its mandate (from 2008-2015). The archives holds student and school records from the Government of Canada and religious records from church entities as well as records on a range of issues that are important to Indigenous communities across Canada.

Inside the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation. Image Courtesy of UM Today News

“Sharing the experiences and providing access to the records of residential schools in a way that is easy and comprehensive is an important part of reconciliation. We are proud to have contributed to the Centre’s work to serve Indigenous communities, incorporate Indigenous perspectives, and build a decolonized archives,” says Justin Simpson, Artefactual Managing Director.

In March 2020, just before travel restrictions were coming into place, Artefactual team members met at the NCTR offices in Winnipeg to discuss the Centre’s requirements and the capabilities of both AtoM and Archivematica. AtoM provides online access to the NCTR archives and Archivematica will be used behind-the-scenes to ensure that these archives are accessible and usable, preserved, into the future.

“The NCTR chose this system because it is open source, which allows [them] to build and develop [their] own systems for projects and programs that fit [their] mandate and better serve [their] communities.The new system also provides the NCTR with the ability to continue its work on decolonizing the archives while accommodating Indigenous languages into the records.” (UM News March 29, 2021)

Artefactual’s mission is to ensure that the evidence of the past can be cared for in the present and trusted in the future by building knowledge, networks, and tools and by contributing openly to a global community of practice. For more information about Artefactual’s products and services please contact us at

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