Smithsonian: A Massive New Database Will Connect Billions of Historic Records to Tell the Full Story of American Slavery

Smithsonian: A Massive New Database Will Connect Billions of Historic Records to Tell the Full Story of American Slavery. “[Daryle] Williams, a specialist in the African diaspora of Brazil, is one of the principal investigators of a massive new online database called ‘Enslaved: Peoples of the Historic Slave Trade,’ which will launch in 2020. It aims to serve as a clearinghouse for information about enslaved people and their captors. Headquartered at Matrix, the Center for Digital Humanities & Social Sciences at Michigan State University, and funded by a founding $1.5 million grant from the Mellon Foundation, Enslaved will serve as a hub for many smaller digitization projects, Freedom Narratives among them.”

The indispensable Ken Burns has a new initiative: A one-stop online resource for teachers (Washington Post)

Kinda surprised I missed this last week, but there you are. From the Washington Post: The indispensable Ken Burns has a new initiative: A one-stop online resource for teachers. “Burns — the maker of ‘The Civil War,’ ‘Baseball,’ ‘Jazz,’ ‘The War,’ ‘The National Parks: America’s Best Idea,’ ‘Prohibition,’ ‘The Roosevelts’ and ‘The Vietnam War’ — launched a new research site for educators on Tuesday called ‘Ken Burns in the Classroom’ on PBS LearningMedia — an online destination for free teaching and learning resources inspired by his documentaries.”

USC Libraries: USC Libraries Digitizing 10,200 Hamlin Garland Letters

USC Libraries: USC Libraries Digitizing 10,200 Hamlin Garland Letters. “The National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) is generously supporting a project by the USC Libraries to digitize a trove of 10,200 letters between writer Hamlin Garland and important figures in late 19th and early 20th century American life. Once the project is complete, these letters will be freely accessible online via the USC Digital Library and Digital Public Library of America. Garland is best known for his short-story collection Main-Travelled Roads (1891) exploring Midwestern farm life, his autobiography A Son of the Middle Border (1917), and his biography of Civil War general and U.S. president Ulysses S. Grant. Garland played a leading role in conceptualizing American literary realism and earned a Pulitzer Prize in 1922 for A Daughter of the Middle Border.”

Vanity Fair: The End Of The Social Era Can’t Come Soon Enough

Vanity Fair: The End Of The Social Era Can’t Come Soon Enough. “Many people imagine 19th-century antebellum America as a frontier fantasia: men with handlebar mustaches sitting in dusty saloons, kicking back moonshine whiskey, as a piano player picks out tunes in the background. In reality, though, life was a little more sordid: Americans spent their time after work in fully legal heroin dens; in 1885, opium and cocaine were even given to children to help with teething. ‘Cocaine Toothache Drops,’ which were marketed as presenting an ‘instantaneous cure’ were sold for 15 cents a box. Today, in the midst of our opioid crisis, we hear about this past and wonder unequivocally, what the hell were they thinking?”

I Saved Every Letter You Wrote Me: The Library of Congress Digitizes Hamilton (NPR)

NPR: I Saved Every Letter You Wrote Me: The Library of Congress Digitizes Hamilton. “If you’ve seen the hit musical Hamilton — or even if you’ve only heard about it — you might want to know more about the founding father who was the United States’ first Secretary of the Treasury. And if so, the Library of Congress just made it easier to go right to the source. Before, if you wanted to see — for example — Alexander Hamilton’s letters to his wife, you had to travel to the Library of Congress in Washington D.C., and even then, you’d have to view them on microfilm. Now, Julie Miller, the Library’s curator of Early American Manuscripts, says the collection has been digitized. “

Fold3: Access Revolutionary War Records for Free*

Fold3: Access Revolutionary War Records for Free* The asterisk means you’ll need to register for a free account. “Do you have ancestors who fought in the Revolutionary War? Now is the perfect time to learn more about them, as Fold3 is giving free access* to our Revolutionary War Collection July 1–15.”

Indy Week: The Southern Oral History Program Noticed a Lack of Asian-American Voices in Its Archive. Southern Mix Is the Fix

Indy Week (North Carolina): The Southern Oral History Program Noticed a Lack of Asian-American Voices in Its Archive. Southern Mix Is the Fix. . “A graduate of Duke and UNC, [Anna-Rhesa] Versola founded Southern Mix, which launched in April. A collaboration at UNC between SOHP, the Carolina Asia Center, and UNC’s Alumni Committee for Racial and Ethnic Diversity (of which Versola is a member), the project is collecting oral histories from Asian and Asian-American residents of the Triangle and the larger region, documenting stories about immigration, assimilation, and the blending or preservation of cultures.”

TechCrunch: Equal Justice Initiative, backed by Google.org, launches ‘Lynching in America’

TechCrunch: Equal Justice Initiative, backed by Google.org, launches ‘Lynching in America’. “Thanks in part to funding by Google.org, Equal Justice Initiative has launched an online platform to explore the history of lynching in America. The goal with Lynching in America is to enable people to confront the history of lynching through research, data and the stories of those affected by lynching in America.”

Library of Congress: Veterans History Project Launches World War I Website Companion Exhibit

From the Library of Congress: Veterans History Project Launches World War I Website Companion Exhibit. “The Veterans History Project (VHP) has launched a web exhibit that complements the Library of Congress’s major exhibition ‘Echoes of the Great War: American Experiences of World War I.’ The three-part web companion, “Experiencing War,” will help tell the larger story of the war from the perspective of those who served in it. Part I is now available…Part II and Part III will be available in July and September 2017.”

Google Blog: By Washington’s teeth! U.S. presidential history, now on Google Arts & Culture

Google Blog: By Washington’s teeth! U.S. presidential history, now on Google Arts & Culture. “Today, as a follow-up to our American Democracy collection, Google Arts & Culture is partnering with more than 30 cultural institutions to bring you history from the United States presidency… With over 2,000 new artifacts, photos, pictures and more, and 63 new exhibits (for 158 exhibits, total) this collection invites you to remember and celebrate the history, lives and legacies of the 44 U.S. presidents.”

WaPo: From the attics and shoeboxes of Virginia, a trove of historical gold

Washington Post: From the attics and shoeboxes of Virginia, a trove of historical gold. “From 2010 until last year, as Virginia observed the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, archivists traveled the state in an “Antiques Roadshow” style campaign to unearth the past. Organizers had thought the effort might produce a few hundred new items. They were a little off. It flushed out more than 33,000 pages of letters, diaries, documents and photographs that the library scanned and has made available for study online.”

Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Library & Museums Revamps Its Web Site

The Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Library and Museums has revamped its Web site (sounds like it’s been adding new content, too.) “The site includes the Hayes’ museum’s obituary index, the ability to search through the museum’s 90,000 books, manuscripts and images of the president and his family and educational programs and resources. [Kristina] Smith said site visitors can browse through the museum’s manuscript collections online, search the diaries and letters of President Hayes and look at political cartoons from the Gilded Age.”

Google Is Teaming Up with the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture

Google is teaming up with the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC). “In addition to the interactive exhibit, we’re also launching two new Google Expeditions that take students on a digital journey through African American history. Earlier this year, we formed the African American Expeditions Council — a group of top minds in Black culture, academia and curation — to help develop Expeditions that tell the story of Africans in America. With participation from the National Park Service, the Expeditions team captured images of the Selma to Montgomery National Historic Trail, which commemorates the events, people and route of the 1965 Voting Rights March. A second Expedition, from the Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site, takes you around Dr. King’s childhood home and the historic Ebenezer Baptist Church, where he preached.”

LOC’s “Today in History” Site Gets an Update

The Library of Congress “Today in History” site has gotten some updates. “In August, Today in History received its first major redesign in nearly a dozen years, and the redesigned collection can now be accessed from the Library’s home page. In addition to a streamlined look that allows easier navigation among Today in History’s 542 essays, the collection also offers an email alert service where you can subscribe and receive daily notices about the day’s featured items.”