James Baker, University of Sussex 'Making African Connections: decolonial futures for colonial collections' is a two-year AHRC-funded project researching historic African collections in South-Coast Museums. Our aim is to further conceptual and applied debates over 'decolonising' public institutions. The project entails building a digital archive based on collections whose journeys to three museums - Brighton Museum and Art Gallery, Royal Engineers Museum, and the Powell-Cotton Museum - began with military, missionary and ethnographic encounters in Botswana, Sudan, and the Namibia/Angola borderlands. The research is co-produced through partnership with African museums and curators as well as African diaspora and BME groups in the UK, and also involves exhibitions and international loans. Building a digital archive is more than making a website, it is imaging, cataloguing, metadata mapping, rights management, digital preservation, and a wikimedian-in-residence programme whose delivery is informed by our shared intellectual agenda. This paper presents three aspects of our work: The potential for harm in unthinkingly applying open licences to digital representations of objects produced outside the legal frameworks of the Global North. Strategies for presenting collections so as to make explicit their entanglement with colonial knowledge organisation. Using open processes and documentation to create favourable conditions for long-term digital preservation.