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Category: Technology

A woman with sterile rubber gloves leans over a turntable to place a needle on a record.

Saving the Sounds of History

Posted by: Wendi Maloney

The Library's custom-designed multitracking studio at National Audio-Visual Conservation Center was built to house and preserve the collections of guitarist and audio-engineering innovator Les Paul. But it's also used to convert, preserve and save recordings made on formats that may not last. It's one of several labs that use cutting-edge technology to save the nation's recorded sound history.

A man in a cap and glasses stands behind of a large desk with several items set in front of him.

Alan Haley, Preservation Specialist

Posted by: Wendi Maloney

Alan Haley, a preservation specialist in the Conservation Division, has worked on everything from an ancient Chinese scroll to the transcript of the Amistad trial in the Library's collections, but has also traveled the globe assisting other libraries with important items or artifacts that are threatened.

“Language is Life” and Native American Historical Voices

Posted by: Wendi Maloney

The Library and three Native American tribes are collaborating on a project to digitize and restore some 9,000 wax cylinder recordings of Native Americans singing and telling stories from more than a century ago. The work is the subject of "Language is Life," a documentary narrated by Joy Harjo, the former U.S. poet laureate. It premiered at the Library in November in advance of its broadcast as part of the PBS series, “Native America.”