On 10 May 2007 in the Ministry of Culture Auditorium, Carmen Calvo, Minister of Culture, presented the PARES project to the media.
Pares constitutes an arrival point within the promotional programme of the Ministry of Culture's national cultural institutions, which has achieved its aim of offering society free access through internet, respecting the restrictions set out in current legislation, to the documentation preserved in the national archives, enabling immediate and simple access that is available 24 hours a day. Among the advantages it offers are the following: it does away with the need to travel to the various centres and it enables citizens and researchers to group their questions by theme and obtain responses from all the centres that have downloaded the information on the platform, thus breaking down spatial-temporal barriers. Pares thus becomes an international benchmark due to the value it gives on our documentary heritage.
It is an advanced platform that unifies the management of centres and the promotion of our Historical Documentary Heritage, with the aim of becoming the common tool for all Spanish archives. At the time of its internet launch it had a total of 19,179 642 digitised images and 1,714 898 documents described, figures that are constantly being updated.
Apart from all of this, Pares also offers the possibility of accessing three projects of great social and cultural interest: 1. Spanish deportees to Nazi concentration camps (87,05 entries). 2. General responses from the Catastro of Ensenada (13,118 entries with 100,000 images). 3. Posters from the Spanish Civil War (2,293 posters).
The Historical Memory Documentation Centre, the creation of which was announced in Law 21/2005 of 17 November, came into being with the publication of the corresponding Royal Decree 697/2007 of 1 June, regulating the formation and activity of the Historical Memory Documentation Centre:
Among the roles it has been given, the following should be highlighted:
-To recover, gather, organise and make available to citizens, and in particular those with an interest, documental archives and secondary sources that could be of interest for the study of the Spanish Civil War, the Franco Dictatorship, the guerilla resistance against the dictatorship, exile, the internment of Spanish citizens in concentration camps during the Second World War and the Transition.
-To promote historical research into the Spanish Civil War, Francoism, exile and the Transition and to contribute to the promotion of the outcome to this research.
-To advise and co-operate in locating information for recovering the memory and helping victims of repression.
The acquisition of documental archives has got off to a successful start and has led to the recovery of materials from Europe, such as the drawings of Heinz Raebiger, photographs by Eric Andrés, documentation from the Spanish Federation of Deportees and Political Interns with its head office in Paris, the archive of Amadeo Calzada (Toulouse), collaboration with the Centre d’Études et Documentation des Guerres Contemporaines (CEGESOMA), l’Institut d’Histoire Social (AMSAB) and the Belgian Association of Children of the War, documentation from BBC Radio 4 in Great Britain, fluid collaboration with Latin America, collaboration with North America, with the donation from the legacy of Jesús López Pacheco preserved in Canada, and the relationship initiated with international organisations such as the Red Cross, the International Labour Organisation, the World Health Organisation, the Society of Nations, which has all led to the digitisation of documentation of relevance to Spanish society.
Published by:© Ministry of Culture.
General Technical Secretary
General Assistant Manager
of Publications, Information and Documentation