Linton Weeks, in a post for NPR, describes a unique digital audio archive at Stanford on the civil rights movement: Project South. Here is part of Weeks’ description of the archive:
The Background: Exactly 50 years ago this year — in the summer of 1965 — a group of eight students filtered out into the Southern United States. Under the aegis of Stanford’s Institute of American History — and with help from campus radio station, KZSU — the young people gathered more than 300 hours of amazing audio recordings. They interviewed a lot of people — young and old, black and white — including members of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.
Weeks invites readers to help him crowdsource the archive….
Historically speaking, I need your help.
Davis Houck, a communications professor at Florida State University, recently pointed me toward a little-explored archive at Stanford University called Project South.
It’s an intriguing trove — full of original source material. In fact, it’s so rich with historical moments, I need your help to sort it all out.
So I am asking anyone who is interested — historians professional and amateur — to do some research sleuthing. Let’s commit historical crowdsourcery.
Davis Houck, who wrote about the Project South archive for the Clarion-Ledger in Jackson, Miss., in 2014 tells NPR History Dept. that the relatively obscure archives “are just remarkable: from the highs of Dr. King’s oratory to Fannie Lou Hamer’s amazing testimony, to lots of singing, to a Klan rally! And I would underscore, and keep in mind this is somebody who writes about civil rights for a living, there’s simply nothing else even remotely like it.”
Read the rest of the NPR article here: http://goo.gl/QuRKzG
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1965. AP
From Slate‘s history blog, The Vault, Rebecca Onion features five digital collections and/or historical websites:
“2014 brought us a wealth of new digital archives and document-rich historical websites to peruse. Here, in no particular order, are five of the best such sites I saw this year.”
Follow the link to enjoy. She promises a link to five more sites tomorrow.
Historical documents online: Five best digital archives from 2014.
The Shelley-Godwin Archive.
The Frankenstein manuscript comes alive in this digital archive!!
THIS is what the digital humanities is about, in my opinion. Big data is important, yes; but what really jazzes me is when materials that have been hidden away in museums and libraries make their public appearance in ways that are beautiful, useful, and open access!
The King James Bible Virtual Exhibit : The King James Bible.
Here is an interesting DH project from Ohio State libraries about the King James Bible. It was developed as part of a pilot project, as the developer describes below:
The exhibits pilot innovation grant project was a partnership of three departments, Digital Content Services (formerly SRI), Rare Books and Manuscripts, and the Web Implementation Team (nowApplications, Development and Support). The Preservation and Reformatting Department (Amy McCrory) and the Copyright Resources Center (Sandra Enimil) were also heavily involved. The grant was “to develop a new model for creating and delivering digital exhibits at the Libraries.” The project was developmental in scope, and the specific goals were to create a polished digital version of a physical exhibit, and to gather information about what would be required to develop an exhibits program in the Libraries.
The King James Bible exhibit, curated by Eric Johnson, is indeed a polished exhibit. We learned a great deal from working on it, such as the need to create a glossary of terms as reference for all people on the project. We also identified the strengths and weaknesses of the Omeka software for our environment. The research into what it would take to build a sustainable program took many forms. We looked at existing digital exhibits at OSUL, as well as curator expectations for exhibit functionality, and the use of Omeka at other institutions. We tracked information on the time it took to create the exhibit.
What’s next? The report is done and has been given to the Executive Committee. The suggestions in the report are just that – suggestions. We were not charged to develop a program. We applied for funding to explore the possibilities; the report is what we discovered. It is also worth noting that the environment has changed since the report was written. Most important, is that the Libraries have hired an Exhibits Coordinator. However, many of you have expressed interest in our results.
Read Report Here (docx).
Big data meets the Bard – FT.com.
Yet another article about the perhaps “diabolical” use of “Big Data” in the humanities. The article describes the author’s reactions to a Skype seminar from the Stanford Literary Lab. While I don’t think that “Big Data” will replace actually reading novels, I did cringe at this quote:
Ryan Heuser, 27-year-old associate director for research at the Literary Lab, tells me he can’t remember the last time he read a novel. “It was probably a few years ago and it was probably a sci-fi. But I don’t think I’ve read any fiction since I’ve been involved with the lab.”
But reading books, and analyzing Big Data, as I’ve said before on this blog, are different –and complementary–tasks.