Interested in learning more about what’s new in the Library of Congress’ digital collections? The Signal now shares out semi-regularly about new additions to publicly-available digital collections and we can’t wait to show off all the hard work from our colleagues from across the Library. Read on for a sample of what’s been added recently and some of our favorite highlights. Click here for previous updates.
What’s new on loc.gov?
This selection of fieldwork materials (212 folders containing approximately 9,450 items; 37,200+ images) from the papers of noted American anthropologist and writer Margaret Mead (1901–1978) spans the years 1925-1978, with the bulk dating 1925-1933. Part of the “Fieldwork: South Pacific Ethnographic Archives” series in a much larger Mead collection, these documents relate principally to her early field expeditions between 1925 and 1933 studying life among peoples in American Samoa, present-day Papua New Guinea, and the Omaha Tribe of Nebraska, with a scattering of folders relating to more recent trips to New Guinea in the early 1970s. Additional documents relating to Mead’s fieldwork and other professional and personal activities during this time period and later are available for research use in the Manuscript Reading Room. See below for select images from the collection.
Collection updates and migrations
This first major update to the U.S. Congressional Serial Set provides document-level access to the contents of the volumes of the Serial Set previously released for the 69th Congress. This work is part of an ongoing interagency project between the Law Library and the U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO); the site will continue to be updated as digitization proceeds.
This update to the ever-popular Federal Theatre Project online collection includes the addition of about three-thousand items, primarily photo prints and set designs, as well as the incorporation of playbill transcriptions from the By the People crowdsourced transcription campaign (more on that below!)
Following the completion of extensive conservation treatment needed for this one-of-a-kind collection – one of the most extensive attempts in world history to capture the entirety of human knowledge in book form – all of the Library’s 41 volumes have now been digitized and are available online (view image on right).
The following collections have been added to the Occupational Folklife Project online presentation in recent months Ranger Lore: The Occupational Folklore of Park Rangers, Archie Green Fellows Project, 2013-2015, Ethnic Grocers in the Urban Midwest: Archie Green Fellows Project, 2014-2015, and Psychiatric nurses in Wisconsin : Archie Green Fellow project, 2018-2019.
New OA eBooks
Over 400 new open access titles added to the Open Access Books collection! Some highlights include books about religion such as German rabbis in British exile : from ‘Heimat’ into the unknown, Hindu pluralism : religion and the public sphere in early modern South India, and Russian policy in the Orthodox East : the Patriarchate of Constantinople (1878-1914).
New crowdsourced transcriptions
By the People added over 9,000 completed volunteer transcriptions into loc.gov this Fall, bringing the program’s lifetime total to over 141,000! These transcriptions enable enhanced discoverability and accessibility of images of Library collection materials. New transcriptions are now available for the following online collections:
- Georgia O’Keeffe and Alfred Stieglitz Correspondence
- George Washington papers (comprising Washington’s Revolutionary War receipts, notebooks containing interviews with British deserters during the war, and farm reports for Washington’s plantations)
- Federal Theatre Project playbills (see below)
Additions to the Library’s Web Archives
The Web Archiving Team recently released content for nearly 360 items and hit the milestone of 30,000+ total items available on loc.gov! The archives coming out of embargo include additions to 37 collections and content spanning 45 countries and 31 languages. The new releases include materials related to government, African Studies, Education, European Studies, Music, History, Political Science, Human Rights, and more.
Some highlights include 115 new items from Kenya, doubling the number of records from that country, including The Elephant, Kenya News Agency, and Kenya Law. Other highlights are from the American Folklife Center, which added 3 items to their web archive collections, including Folk Dance Federation of California, Minnesota Folksong Collection, and Peggy Fleming Photography.
Leave us any questions or comments below and keep an eye out for our next edition at the end of January 2023!