In our most recent progress update on the digital library, we reported that 25% of the items we “own” (in digitized form) have been cataloged. This is a significant milestone. Still, with so many materials yet to be processed, cataloged, and published, my colleagues and I sometimes want to “be sane” by crying out, “No more!” until we catch up.
However, in the unflagging spirit of TR, we never cease to “do things,” and we recently initiated conversations with two new prospective digital library partners.
During visits to Chicago early this summer, Clay Jenkinson and I visited the Newberry Library. President David Spadafora and his staff were very generous, both in sharing the treasures of the Library and in encouraging our efforts and being willing to enter into partnership to digitize their TR holdings.
Newberry Library in Chicago, Illinois. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:20070329_Newberry_Library1.JPG.
On a trip to Ann Arbor, Michigan, last month, Keri Youngstrand visited the Bentley Historical Library at the University of Michigan. Keri, too, was received cordially. Karen Jania, head of Access and Reference Services, and Nancy M. Deromedi, Archivist, encouraged us to identify the Roosevelt items in which we are interested, and then continue the conversations about how we might collaborate to get them digitized.
Bentley Historical Library. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Bhlexterior.jpg
These remarkable institutions hold major collections on many subjects and small but important collections of Roosevelt materials. Their Roosevelt holdings are small enough that TR scholars and enthusiasts might not spend the time and money to visit and do research there. So these items have been “hidden” in many ways until now. We are so pleased to be able to bring them to light.
Through these collaborative partnerships, we continue to “Get action!” in a way that serves all parties: the holding institution, the Theodore Roosevelt Center, and you who will have access to these lesser known historical gems, once they are available in the digital library!