Projects and Grants
Coal, Camps, and Railroads | 2013-2016: The National Endowment for the Humanities awarded UK Libraries a Humanities Collections and Reference Resources grant to digitize 132 cubic feet (264,000 pages) of portions of the Bert T. Combs Appalachian Collection held in UK Special Collections, focusing on 189 years of economic development in the Eastern Kentucky coalfield from 1788 to 1976. The ten individual collections document the search for, extraction of, and distribution of coal, oil, and natural gas resources in Breathitt, Boyd, Clark, Floyd, Harlan, Lawrence, Letcher, Perry, and Powell counties; the creation of railroads to bring these raw materials to industrial manufacturers and electrical power generators across the United States; and the company towns, their services, and the individual lives that grew up to sustain and make possible this economic development. View our progress here.
Digital Public Library of America | 2012-present: UK Libraries and the Kentucky Digital Library were selected as one of the initial service hubs for the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA). Kentucky was selected based on the strength of our technological infrastructure and content. The goal of DPLA is to “create a resource that goes well beyond providing simple access to digitized or born digital content,” which will be achieved through developing code, harvesting metadata, incorporating various media types, and offering tools to enhance the use of content. Funding for DPLA is provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities, Knight Foundation, Institution of Museum and Library Services, LYRASIS, Sloan Foundation, and Arcadia Fund. Digital libraries in Minnesota, South Carolina, Oregon, Georgia, and Massachusetts, and the Mountain West Digital Library (Utah, Nevada, and Arizona) have also been chosen as service hubs. You can find more details on the DPLA project homepage. The official launch date is set for April 18-19, 2013
Oral History Metadata Synchronizer (OHMS) | 2011: The Institution for Museum and Library Services awarded UK Libraries a National Leadership Grant to further development on OHMS, an open source web-based system that inexpensively and efficiently enhances online access to and discovery of oral histories. OHMS provides users word-level search capability and a time-correlated transcript or index connecting the textual search term to the corresponding moment in the recorded interview online. More information on OHMS can be found here.
National Digital Newspaper Program (NDNP) | 2005-2013: The National Endowment for the Humanities and the Library of Congress partnered to form NDNP, a long-term effort to provide permanent access to a national digital resource of historic newspapers, focusing on content published between 1936 and 1922. UK was selected for the pilot run based on the strength of our microfilming efforts and has received a total of 4 award cycles. More information can be found on the Kentucky NDNP website. Digitized newspapers can be found in the NDNP database, Chronicling America.
Arranging and Describing Archives Related to Appalachian History and Culture | 2005: UK Libraries and the UK Appalachian Center was selected for a We the People Grant for the archival processing and production of machine readable finding aids for over 2,600 linear feet of significant Appalachian archival collections housed at UK. These finding aids are available on the Kentucky Digital Library and ExploreUK.
Beyond the Shelf: Serving Historic Kentuckiana Through Virtual Access | 2002: The Institution for Museum and Library Services National Leadership Grant (Digitization/Preservation category) funded a cooperative endeavor between UK and the Kentucky Virtual Library to digitize 1,000 (approximately 225,000 pages) Kentucky-related publications from preservation microfilm. More information can be found here.
The preservation of digital assets created by the University of Kentucky Libraries is essential to maintaining appropriate access to the unique library holdings now and into the future. A simple definition of digital preservation is the long-term maintenance of a file sufficient to reproduce a facsimile of the original document and for the continued accessibility of the document through time and changing technology. We have made a commitment to employing intelligent approaches to preserving our digital content through digital curation, the process of establishing and developing long-term repositories of digital assets for current and future reference by researchers, scientists, and historians, and scholars generally. Within the digital curation model, we have established an Open Archival Information System (OAIS) repository developed utilizing the University of California’s Micro Services model. With its modular approach and reliance on a file system surrounded by digital curation services, we believe that the Micro Services model allows us to remain agile with the changing tide of digital technologies while also keeping our data accessible through both mediated and direct unmediated access via the file system store.