Fold3: New Naval Records on Fold3!. “We have added a new collection of naval records to our archives! The Navy Officers’ Letters 1802-1884 is a collection of letters to the Secretary of the Navy from officers assigned to naval ships, stations, and Navy bureaus. The letters contain routine personnel matters such as duty assignments, leave or furloughs, desertions, resignations, court-martials, and other administrative issues. The collection is organized by year and then alphabetically by sender. The letters offer a glimpse into military history and provide valuable genealogical records for ancestors that served in the Navy.”
WTOP: Holocaust Museum digitizing letters from Anne Frank’s father. “Ryan Cooper was a 20-something Californian unsure of his place in the world when he struck up a pen pal correspondence in the 1970s with Otto Frank, the father of the young Holocaust victim Anne Frank. Through dozens of letters and several face-to-face meetings, the two forged a friendship that lasted until Frank died in 1980 at the age of 91.”
The Newberry: The Newberry Releases Digital Collection of 26,000 Early 20th-Century Postcards. “The Newberry has launched a digital archive of over 26,000 high-quality images of picture postcards produced by pioneering British company Raphael Tuck & Sons during the first half of the 20th century. Drawing on a vast archive of postcards received by the Newberry in 2016 and developed with the support of Leonard A. Lauder, the new digital collection provides users with a comprehensive body of material for investigating the ways in which British citizens formed and disseminated their perceptions of the world 100 years ago.”
The Journal: Shepherd, Loyola Chicago awarded grant to create historical database. “The Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture at the College of William & Mary has awarded Benjamin Bankhurst, assistant professor of history at Shepherd University, and Kyle Roberts, associate professor of public history and new media and director of the Center for Textual Studies and Digital Humanities at Loyola University Chicago, with a $5,000 Lapidus Digital Collections Fellowship for ‘The Maryland Loyalist Project.’ The project is a collaboration between Bankhurst and Roberts, aiming to make the letters and petitions of British loyalists who fled the American Revolution housed in the British National Archives available in a digital archive.”
Worldcrunch: Facebook For Felons? New Apps Are A Digital Lifeline For Inmates. “Pigeonly is one of at least three apps — all launched by ex-cons— that are revolutionizing communications between prisoners and their loved ones. Even as the outside world has embraced texting, video chats and social media, U.S. prisons have largely remained technological dead zones, where inmates typically wait in line and pay to use antiquated computers running stripped-down email services. The trio of apps are slowly but surely disrupting a prison communications industry dominated by a handful of companies with little incentive to cut prices or boost services for the 2.3 million people behind bars.”
Patheos: New Social Media Site Aims To Promote Thoughtful And Nuanced Conversations. “Letter is a new website that rewards thoughtful discussion and hosts a variety of conversations. People write ‘letters’ back and forth to each other in a long style format. So anyone can read a variety of nuanced conversations happening on a variety of topics, but you don’t have to worry about trolls getting in and ruining the discussion.” Took a brief look at the site. What I saw I really liked, but there wasn’t a lot of content available yet.
University of Michigan: Historical Letters In U-M Zoology Museum Archive Highlight Links Between Specimen Collection, Conservation . “Clark Schmutz spent more than 100 hours last semester reading and digitally scanning hundreds of letters in the correspondence files of the University of Michigan Museum of Zoology’s mammal collections, which date back to the 1800s. The scanning project is a multiyear effort to make the museum’s correspondence files available online. For Schmutz, who graduated in December with a double major in English and ecology, evolution and biodiversity, it was also an opportunity to search for intriguing stories that illustrate the links between museum collections and conservation.”