LSU Libraries Special Collections Announces More Louisiana Newspapers to Be Digitized as Part of Digitizing Louisiana Newspapers Project
BATON ROUGE – LSU Libraries’ Special Collections division is pleased to announce that 27 historical newspapers from around the state have been selected for digitization and inclusion in the Library of Congress’s Chronicling America program.
The work is being done as part of the Digitizing Louisiana Newspapers Project, funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities and LSU Libraries.
The newspapers to be digitized will cover the period 1836 to 1922, providing a valuable resource for people interested in Louisiana history and genealogy. They will supplement the 55 Louisiana papers that LSU’s project has already added to Chronicling America.
“We are especially excited to be able to include our first non-English newspaper titles,” said project director Gina Costello. “Louisiana has had so many important bi-lingual newspapers.”
The new titles include 17 French-language newspapers and one Spanish-language paper, Costello said. Approximately 100,000 pages from the newly selected newspapers will be added to Chronicling America in installments over the next 18 months.
“We expect the final pages to be available online by the end of 2013,” said project manager Laura Charney. “When this phase of the project is complete, more than 200,000 pages of historical Louisiana newspapers, drawn from 82 different newspaper titles, will be available to the public free of charge.”
All the titles were selected based on evaluations conducted by an advisory board made up of experts in Louisiana history, including teachers, archivists, journalists, genealogists, and historians. Charney coordinated the process of selecting the new titles.
“Our Advisory Board steered the selection,” Costello said. “All the scanning is done from microfilm, so after the Advisory Board prioritized titles, the LSU Libraries team made sure the microfilm was in good condition so that the scans would be as keyword-searchable as possible.”
“With the addition of non-English papers, we will have more comprehensive coverage in the state, both chronologically and geographically,” Charney added. “The end result is a list of over two dozen newspapers from 16 parishes.”
The complete list of titles chosen for the Digitizing Louisiana Newspapers Project is available at www.lib.lsu.edu/special/cc/dlnp/titleslist.html.
This project is funded primarily by grants awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities in collaboration with the Library of Congress as part of the National Digital Newspaper Program, or NDNP. The goal of NDNP is to make accessible digital copies of unique, historically significant newspapers published between 1836 and 1922. The NDNP aims to create a comprehensive database of U.S. newspapers with descriptive information and searchable digitized pages of our “first drafts of history.”
Three presentations about the project are scheduled for March in Northwest Louisiana:
• Wednesday, March 21, at 6 p.m. at the Natchitoches Parish Library, 450 2nd Street Natchitoches, La. This event is open to the public.
• Thursday, March 22, at 4 p.m., during the Louisiana Library Association Conference, held at the Shreveport Convention Center, 400 Caddo Street Shreveport, La. This event is only open to those attending the conference.
• Friday, March 23, at 1:30 p.m. at the Noel Memorial Library at LSU-Shreveport. This event is open to the public.
Additional engagements will be offered around the state throughout 2012 and 2013, Costello said.
To learn more about the Library of Congress’ Chronicling America program, visit http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov.