The Archives of Falconry contains the most comprehensive English-language falconry library in the world. It includes falconry books, articles and essays, manuscripts, equipment, memorabilia, art, field notes, and a substantial media collection on the ancient sport of falconry. Modern falconers were instrumental in organizing the successful recovery effort of the once-endangered Peregrine Falcon.
The collection and preservation of falconry-related materials is the priority of The Archives, and accessions from individuals and clubs are added every year. Each contribution is attributed to the donor and may contain multiple items.
Periodically, an auction of duplicate books is held to raise funds for the operations of the Archives. Falconers often contribute items for sale, such as books and art, specifically for this purpose in addition to their financial support.
The Sheikh Zayed Arab Falconry Heritage Wing was added in 2006 and doubled the size of the Archives. Twice-daily tours are conducted by the Velma Morrison Interpretive Center staff and volunteers. This stunning display juxtaposes the heritage of one of the oldest falconry cultures with our American heritage, one of the youngest. The interactive displays help interpret the falconer’s role in conserving birds of prey — a goal of The Archives of Falconry.
The Wall of Remembrance was dedicated in March 2007 as a way for falconers to remember their falconer friends in a place that honors the passion that they once shared for falconry. A time to remember them is held during the annual Rendezvous each March. Their friends are allowed time to recall memories of days gone by and friendships shared.
The Book of Remembrance is a written and visual story of the falconers whose names have been placed on the Wall of Remembrance. Displayed in The Archives of Falconry, it presents personal memorabilia relating to the honored falconer, including photographs, biography, obituary, photos of hawks flown, and personal reminiscences. The book celebrates individual contributions to falconry and conservation of birds of prey.
The Annual Spring Rendezvous is an opportunity for falconers from near and far to greet old friends, meet new ones, and celebrate their sport. Activities include special exhibits and speakers. A day at the Archives is followed by a banquet that night.
The Legacy Circle was dedicated in memory of Chad Hunter Cyrus to recognizes living donors and their families who contribute, or plan to contribute, significant material support to The Archives of Falconry.
Special emphasis is being placed on the development and growth of the Archives Heritage Fund (formerly called the endowment fund). This fund recognizes those who make personal gifts or provisions for an estate gift to the Archives. The Heritage Fund currently provides for nearly half of the annual operating expenses but needs to reach 90% to effectively ensure the long-term future of the Archives. To accomplish this, our Heritage Fund will have to double from its current value of $1 million to $2 million over the next five years.
The fourth volume in the Archives Heritage Series was published in 2011: Bibliotheca Accipitraria II by author/curator John R. Swift. This significant reference work is the culmination of nearly thirty years of his work, collecting information on all relevant English-language falconry publications from the years 1486 to 2000. The annotated bibliography lists 615 citations and includes anecdotal comments about the authors and their works. Photographs of many rare books at the Archives are also depicted in the volume. The book is available for purchase by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Goals of The Archives of Falconry are to collect, preserve and make accessible the physical evidence of falconers' achievements worldwide and to document their role in raptor conservation.
Falconers have played a significant role in our understanding of raptor biology and raptor conservation. As American falconers realized that the physical evidence of their history was being lost as early practitioners passed away, The Peregrine Fund founded the Archives of American Falconry in 1986. Donated materials reflected the international origins of American falconry and, with the new millennium, we changed the name to The Archives of Falconry (TAF).