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Local History Digitisation Resources
About the Local History Digitisation Project

The Local History digitization Project has been established with the aim of making historical materials available online to local and non-local users and to make online historical collections readily accessible through a common approach.
While the main focus of the project is the digitization of public library local history collection images, the overall scope of the project is much broader. Consequently, strategies will be developed with the potential for collaboration with other industries (such as the Museums sector) and other mediums (such as newspapers) in mind.
The objectives of the Local History Digitisation Project are:

  • To establish a pilot link to Picture Australia with 2-3 public libraries.
  • To develop advice about how to comply with current and emerging industry standards relevant to library services wishing to undertake digitization projects (including projects to increase accessibility to existing digitised material). The outcomes of the pilot study will determine the format this advice will take (for example a 'how to' manual).
  • To provide resources and training so that libraries have a better understanding of the factors to consider when digitising local history collection materials.
  • To hold a seminar to present conclusions of the pilot project and form links with other players.
  • To prepare a major funding proposal to link digitising and workplace skills and seek funding opportunities.
Victoria Visualised Report
The report Victoria Visualised, The Victorian Local History Digitization Study conducted for the State Library of Victoria by Swinburne Library Information Service (SLIS) is located on the Virtual Library Infonet under Statewide Projects Steering Committee Reports. Of particular use to libraries considering digitization of their local history collection is the Digitising Checklist (pages 29-35) which has been devised as a guide for digitization projects.


Australian Copyright - Art and Electronic Networking Issues

Sites relating to Australian Copyright

Digitization Tutorials

Capture Your Collections: a digitisation course for small museums
This training resource is available through Australian Museums and Galleries Online. While the course has been specially designed to meet the needs of volunteers, curators and managers working in regional, local and specialist museums to better manage the process of image digitisation, it is also highly relevant to public library local history collections.
The course provides detailed information on the benefits of collection digitisation including issues of public access and promotion, research, collection management and object preservation. Various options for digitisation project plans are discussed, as well as practical matters such as legal issues, project costs and equipment requirements. Other resources are also included, such as plan templates, a glossary, relevant web-links and a bibliography.

Moving Theory into Practice: Digital Imaging Tutorial (2000-2001) Cornell University Library, Department of Preservation and Conservation, Ithaca, New York Presentation An online tutorial from Cornell University Library offering base level information on the use of digital imaging.

Digitization policy and planning in Australia

National Library of Australia Digitization Policy 2000-2004

State Library of Victoria Digital Strategic Plan 2001-2004

National Library of Australia, Australia's Web resources: guidelines for creators and publishers (2000
The National Library of Australia's simple four-page guide to good practice.

Webb, C. (2001), 'The National Library of Australia's Digital Preservation Agenda', Editor's interview, RLG DigiNews, vol.4, no.1. Current article in which questions were answered about the goals of PANDORA, its selection guidelines, PADI and key research areas needing to be explored to support long term access to digital information.

Australian Digitization Projects This service aims to record and make accessible information about digitization projects undertaken by Australian cultural organisations. It lists digitization projects in over 45 Australian cultural institutions including libraries and universities.

Picture Australia Information

Picture Australia The web site for PictureAustralia, a web service based on a metadata index held at the National Library in Canberra. This links to pictorial images held on the web sites of participating Australian cultural agencies.

Australian Pictorial Thesaurus (APT)

A collection of topic terms for indexing Australian images. The Australian Pictorial Thesaurus has been adopted by PictureAustralia.

Campbell, D. (2001) 'Picture That: Australia in the Forefront', First Monday, vol. 6, no 1. Describes the new Australian Web service PictureAustralia and emphasises that collaboration was the most significant building block.

Dublin Core Metadata Initiative This promotes the widespread adoption of interoperable metadata standards and is developing specialised vocabularies for describing resources. Dublin Core is the metadata standard adopted by PictureAustralia.

Planning considerations for digitization projects

Bishoff, L. (2000), 'Interoperability and Standards in a Museum/Library Collaborative: The Colorado Digitization Project', First Monday, vol. 5, no. 6. Discusses the key project assumptions and standards in the Colorado Digitization Project. Includes environment, metadata and scanning.

Digital Toolbox This gives information and links to all stages of digital project planning.

Digitization. A Project Planning Checklist (1998) Arts and Humanities Data The document offers practical advice on digitising projects and consists of a check list of strategic issues. See the Appendix, 'Estimating Digital Reformatting Costs,' which is based on the Research Libraries Group 1997 worksheet.

Gertz, Janet (2000), 'Vendor relations' in Handbook for Digital Projects: a Management Tool for Preservation and Access, Part V111, ed. Maxine K. Sitts, Northeast Document Conservation Center, Andover, Massachusetts.

Hazen, D. Horell, J. and Merrill-Oldham, J. (1998), Selecting Research Collections for Digitization, Council on Library and Information Resources.
This publication offers a series of questions to be answered if establishing digital programs.

Vogt-O'Connor, D. (2000) "Selection for Scanning" in Handbook for Digital Projects: a Management Tool for Preservation and Access, Part 1V, ed. Maxine K. Sitts, Northeast Document Conservation Center, Andover, Massachusetts.

Beagrie, N. (2000] Going Digital: Issues in Digitization for Public Libraries. An Issue Paper from the Networked Services Policy Taskgroup. A useful UK paper discussing some of the key issues in digitization and developing digitization projects.

Issues in digitization: a report prepared for the Washington State Library Council (1999) The issues and information in this report prepared by the Washington State Library represents the base knowledge held at the beginning of the collaborative digitization project. Includes the components of a digitization project, an inventory of roles, responsibilities and decisions and known costs.

Overseas Digitization Projects

Colorado Digitzation Project The web site of the Colorado Digitization Project, a collaborative initiative of Colorado archives, historical societies, libraries and museums to create an online collection of digital images. It includes numerous links to standards, guidelines and resources.

Knowsley Project The entry point for the United Kingdom Knowsley Metropolitan Borough's project. Memory Digital Scrapbook, 1703-1903 Web site for the Ohio project with links to information and progress reports about the project.

Our Town's Digital Library Web site describing the digital proposal involving two Ohio communities

Powys Project Web site of the Welsh local history project.

Tomorrow's History Web site of major UK Project which is working with libraries, museums, archives and record offices and local and community groups to digitise and improve access to local studies resources.

Washington State Library Digital Images Initiative Web site for the Washington State project. Includes links to projects and information about training.

Funding and Partnerships

Income Generation and Sustainability: An Information Paper from the NOF Technical Advisory Service [2000] nof-digitise Technical Advisory Service. Covers a range of income generating options.

Ormes, S. (1997) 'Public Libraries Corner: Life after the Millenium Bid', Ariadne: the Web Version, issue 7 Considers public libraries in the UK are going to have to take the initiative regarding funding and discusses the methods some authorities are using.

Unsworth, J. (1998) section on 'Place Partners' in NINCH Arts and Humanities Computing: Call for Examples, Vision and Agenda for the Future Describes the idea of Place Projects, which would focus on cities or towns and allow faculty and students of universities and colleges in those places to undertake primary research, combining the results in electronic format.

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