As we unveil our new university website and our new Digital Collections and Exhibitions website here at the University of South Carolina, we can’t help but blog about it!
Digital Collections got started in 2004, and was created by a group of special collections curators and archivists. We primarily serve the special collections units at the university: Irvin Department of Rare Books, South Carolina Political Collections, Government Documents, the South Caroliniana Library and Archives, the Music Library, and the Moving Image Research Center. Our department also participates in nationally-held industry best practices regarding digitization, metadata creation, access, and digital preservation. We serve our South Carolina community as well, and partner with institutions across the state, to share resources and expertise.
Since 2004, over 250 collections (containing over half a million items) have been digitized and described using the content management system CONTENTdm (dm = digital management). During the last 14 years, over 75 staff and students have created these digital wonders, giving you open access to historic newspapers, published and unpublished manuscripts, photographs and negatives, university archives, sheet music, rare books, engravings and prints, oral histories, and political records. Not surprisingly, UofSC’s Digital Collections department was a founding member of Digital Public Library of America and the South Carolina Digital Library.
We’ll be using this blog as a way to show our work, like all your math teachers insisted on. Our department is under lock and key (not open to the public), but our methodology and progress needn’t be. We’ll have guest bloggers (Digi staff, interns, and students) describe their digitization process, cool things they found in the collections, and a nice cross-referenced link or two where you can find the original item we’ve digitized. We’ll also announce new changes to our workflows, exciting new equipment, grants, and collaborations here.