Digital Archives in the Commonwealth Summit
Conference at the University of Virginia
October 13, 2017
The Digital Archives in the Commonwealth Summit aims to highlight the growing number of significant and innovative efforts to conceive of and construct digital archives within Virginia. A joint effort between the University of Virginia Law Library, the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, the Washington and Lee University Library, and the Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, the Summit will serve as a forum for the impressive efforts of those within the Commonwealth contributing to or interested in the digitization and interpretation of archival materials. The Summit will be an open-ended conference assembling individuals and institutions across disciplines—including but not limited to archivists, scholars, librarians, museum specialists, and technologists—who are expanding and grappling with the role of archives and archives-based research in the digital age. It will be an opportunity to present past, future, and ongoing digital archives projects and to explore practical, theoretical, and methodological issues regarding the convergence of archival practice, scholarly research, and pedagogy.
We welcome proposals of individual papers and complete panels of three to four speakers (15 minutes per speaker), workshops (50 minutes), and participants in a digital archives lightning round (5 minutes per speaker).
We envision the summit engaging with the following topics:
- How do digital surrogates change our interpretation, use, or understanding of physical materials?
- New techniques of interfacing, indexing, and discovering content within collections.
- Methods of expanding access, assessing public engagement, and promoting digital archives projects.
- New models of description, interpretation, or analysis of digital archives.
- The inclusion of critical archives theory in archival practice, such as encouraging a focus on collecting and highlighting materials from understudied subjects and persons, opening collections to new audiences and methods of interpretation, or discussions the privileged role archives play in historical memory making.
- The value of digitization in terms of the preservation of the cultural record.
- Discussions on the convergence of technologists, archivists, and scholars inside and outside the archives, particularly regarding collaborative methods of selecting, processing, interpreting, and teaching with collections and digital archives.
- Institutional issues surrounding funding, prioritization, collaboration, or the digital humanities.
- The technological underpinnings of digital archives creation including digitization methods, transcription, development of data models, standards-based metadata, hosting solutions, data management, the application of empirical data techniques, and data visualization.
- Digital archives as pedagogical instruments in classroom instruction and public engagement.
Please submit proposals by June 30, 2017 via http://oieahc.wm.edu/conferences/supported/summit/cfp.html
Questions? Please contact Jim Ambuske (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The Special Collections team at the Arthur J. Morris Law Library is looking for two excellent summer interns to help us with exciting projects in digital history. We’ve partnered with UVA’s Institute for Public History to create two experiential learning opportunities for one undergraduate and one graduate student.
The first initiative is the “Digital 1828 Catalogue Collection Project.” It will help illuminate the history of the Law School and Thomas Jefferson’s vision for legal education in the early American republic. We aim to build a virtual library that will hold digitized copies of the over 700 legal texts originally listed in the university library’s 1828 catalogue. Our goal is inspire new research in legal history by making these rare volumes easily accessible to scholars, and create a new tool that will help other libraries digitally preserve their own rare book collections. We seek a graduate student to help us digitize the volumes, perform research on the texts, and work with us and our partners across grounds to develop the website.
The second project is “Diary of a Dean: The Life of William Minor Lile.” The Law School’s first dean was born two years before the outbreak of the American Civil War and died two years after Adolf Hitler assumed power in Nazi Germany. In 1882, Lile began the first of what became an eleven volume journal. The entries document life in Charlottesville and Virginia as the post-war United States began to exert greater influence on the world stage. We seek an undergraduate student to help us digitize all eleven journals, assist in the creation of a new transcription of the volumes, and develop some interpretative content for the website.
These internships are designed to give students practical public history experience in a team-based environment that includes the Digital Collections Librarian, Postdoctoral Fellow in Digital Humanities, Archivist, and the metadata specialists. We’ll work with you to accomplish your own professional goals as we together tell stories about the past.
Please see the Institute for Public History’s website for complete details about the internships and the application form. Applications are due to Lisa Goff, director of the institute, by 5 p.m. on 3 February 2017.
If you have questions about either of the internships please contact Jim Ambuske or Loren Moulds.
Today is the last day for the Law Library’s Postdoctoral Fellow for the Digital Humanities and colleague-extraordinaire, Randi Flaherty. Randi’s contribution to advancing the work of Special Collections is difficult to calculate. It was Randi who inspired many of the updated interfaces and designs of our websites generally and, importantly, re-investigated the Scottish Court of Sessions papers, persuasively arguing for their digitization. She has provided a model for our outreach efforts by identifying compelling documents and objects from our collections and writing deeply-researched and compelling blog posts [link, link] and essays. She tirelessly engaged with our entire library staff and eloquently contributed to advancing the mission of the library and its archives while laying out a compelling vision for our future. I personally have come to implicitly trust her judgement and have repeatedly relied on her to help tackle problems and envision new possibilities. Without a doubt, she has laid out an exciting path for us and we will sorely miss her contributions and wonderful personality. Her next adventure as a fellow at the International Center for Jefferson Studies offers her an unparalleled opportunity to complete her book project based of the research she did in her dissertation. Much the same as she was here, she will most certainly be an astounding colleague there. We wish her the best of luck.
Amidst our sadness at Randi’s departure, we are very excited to welcome our next Fellow, James “Jim” Ambuske. Jim defended his dissertation this summer on Scottish soldiers and immigration to the American Colonies and Early Republic. Jim has also worked extensively with institutions around Virginia and the British Commonwealth to design digital research tools for accessing and analyzing archival collections. Jim will be taking over the Scottish Papers digitization project as well as helping continue our outreach efforts.
Exams are here and so is candy. Stop by the Reference and Circulation Desks for a quick pick-me-up while supplies last! If caffeine is more to your liking, help yourself to free coffee in MyLab during the exam period. Note that exam hours and policies are now in effect.
The Library Staff wishes students the best of luck with exams!
– The Library Staff
MoreUs: Official blawg for the Arthur J. Morris Law Library is published by the law librarians and staff at the University of Virginia Law School. Our hope is to help keep our students and faculty up-to-date on the latest news about the library, its collections, and how to make the most of their legal research time.
About the name: We named our blawg “More Us” because we hope to tell you more about “us” — our entire community of library users, staff, scholars, the publishing industry, and IT professionals. We’ll share information about the resources we use, what happens behind the scenes at the library, and the rapid evolution of information discovery techniques for legal researchers and scholars.
In addition to the traditional “news and announcements” about the latest databases, training opportunities, and schedule changes, we’ll blawg research tips, tech reviews, and recommendations of newly acquired videos, books and articles. We also hope to hear from you. Whether it’s a comment on a posting or a complaint about a library policy, we welcome your feedback.
About the banner: The banner is based on a cartoon by French satirist Honoré Daumier. This sketch was originally published as Number One in the series “Les Avocats et les Plaideurs” (“The Lawyers and the Litigants”) in the French newspaper Le Charivari on November 12, 1851. We find a kindred spirit in our banner version of Daumier’s avocat: like the UVA Law Library, he is steeped in tradition even as he embraces state-of-the-art technology in his legal research. Prints of Number One and several of Daumier’s other works can be found on display near the Klaus Room in the UVA Law Library.