This volume examines the use of family papers, including diaries, memoirs, and photographs -- as well as primary documents kept by private persons--as essential sources for writing the contemporary history of Palestine. It deals with problems and limitations of these archives as well as methodological issues. Those include: Problems with Archives (Doumani), Islamic Court Records (Srour), Buildings (Ju'beh), Church records (Hintilian),Citzenship and Residency (Esmair).
The second and third parts of this volume contain substantive studies based on archival collections such as the Islamic Court records, Official Israeli and Zionist archives, the archives of Christian Churches in Jerusalem, in addition to private family collections. These include: Internment Camps in Siberia (Tamari), Russian Seminaries in Palestine (Abu Hanna),Mandate Police (Yahya), Mandate Memoirs (Katz), West Jerusalem Diaries (Nassar), Emigration to America (Abdul Jawwad), Mandate Elites (Hammoudeh), Palestine after Egyptian Withdrawal 1841 (Salameh), Abboud Photographic Collection (Mruwwat).