Monday, March 31, 2008


The University of Illinois has been quietly digitizing some of the numerous items in its vast collections:

“The UIUC Library and its departmental libraries conduct a broad range of digital projects, including the digitization of library collections and archives, research in information retrieval technologies for digital collections, and digital library research projects. They also develop instructional resources and facilitating tools for digitization projects, and experiment with the application of digital content in teaching and learning.”

Several of these projects seem of possible special interest to genealogists:

ALA Archives Digital Collections
Includes photographs of past ALA conferences and images of library buildings around the country.

Early 19th Century Russian Readership & Culture
Consists of texts drawn from fiction, journals, memoirs & travel accounts, and supplementary materials on early 19th-century Russian readership, culture & the press.

From Alchemy to Chemistry: Five Hundred Years of Rare and Interesting Books
Contains selected pages of thirty-six books, dating from 1500 to 1964 and showing some of the major shifts in the study of chemistry.

German Emblem Books
A collection of German emblem books, containing ca. 1,000 emblems.

Global Cultural Memory Project
Integrates materials from collaborating institutions, focusing on the past fifty years of cultural history in Champaign County, Illinois.

Historical Maps Online
Includes maps charting the last 400 years of historical development in Illinois and the Northwest Territory and topographic maps of Illinois.

Illinois Air Photo Imagebase
Aerial photographs of Illinois counties dating back to the 1930's, currently including Champaign, Cook, Fulton, Mason, Peoria, and Will.

Illinois Fire Service Institute Digital Archives
Selected archives of the Illinois Fire Service Institute, including photos of the firefighter training programs and facilities.

UIUC Digital Gateway to Cultural Heritage Resources
Contains approximately 538,485 metadata records from 32 collections of images, text, sheet music, websites, museums and archives.


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