of Washington Libraries
Report to the Digital Library Federation
I. Collections and services
II. Projects and Programs
III. Specific digital library
I. Collections, services, and
Over 250 photographs of musical instruments from around the
world. The growing collection is housed in the University of
Washington Ethnomusicology Division which invites one or more
international artists to campus each year to share their musical
traditions through teaching and performance.
A collection of
interviews and images depicting the protests of the WTO
ministerial meeting held in Seattle on November 29 - December 3,
1999. The collection illustrates the efforts to bring activists
to Seattle as well as the diversity of the protests. Originally
reported in the 07/01/01 issue of the DLF Newsletter, the project
is now complete.
University Libraries Digital
cartes-de-visite studio portraits of entertainers, actors,
singers, comedians and theater managers who were involved with or
performed on the American stage in the mid- to late 1800s. Many
are posed in costume and represent characters from popular
theatrical productions of the time.
Hall Indian Tribes of North America
Text and 121 hand
colored lithographs from: The history of the Indian tribes of
North America, with biographical sketches and anecdotes of the
principal chiefs. Embellished with one hundred and twenty
portraits, from the Indian gallery in the Department of war, at
Washington. By Thomas L. McKenney and James Hall. Philadelphia,
E. C. Biddle, 1836-1844.
An ongoing database
of over 200 historical portraits of men and women well known in
the Pacific Northwest region and also nationwide. These include,
among others, architects, artists and writers, government
officials and politicians, historians and educators.
J. Willis Sayre
collected by drama critic and theater promoter J. Willis Sayre.
They consist of autographed portraits of actors, vaudeville
performers, movie stills, singers, dancers, musicians, comedians
and acrobats representing American theater history primarily from
the 1890s and onward. Some are publicity stills from New York and
East Coast photographers, others represent works by Pacific
Northwest and West Coast artists.
depicting early pioneer activities, industries and occupations,
recreation, street scenes, Native Americans, and boat traffic on
Vashon Island, Whidbey Island, and other Puget Sound communities
from the 1880s to the 1930s. Photographed primarily by Oliver S.
Van Olinda, a career newspaperman and resident of Vashon Island,
Pioneer Life Database
A collection of
writings, diaries, letters, and reminiscences drawn from various
sources within the Manuscripts, Special Collections, University
Archives collections that recount the early settlement of
Washington in the 19th century, the establishment of homesteads
and towns and the hardships faced by many of the early
The University of
Washington Libraries provides digital reference services through
email, web forms, and an online, interactive “chat”
service. The Libraries was one of the first 16 libraries to join
the Library of Congress’s Collaborative Digital Reference
Services project (CDRS) in the spring of 2000. When CDRS joined
with OCLC to become QuestionPoint in 2002, the UW Libraries
joined as part of a Washington State group. We participate as
both a local and global partner.
The Libraries began
offering an online interactive (“chat”) reference
service in collaboration with Cornell University in January,
2002, using software from 247ref.org. The service is available
five days a week from 7:00 a.m. until 9:00 p.m. The morning hours
are monitored by Cornell staff, while the UW picks up the late
afternoon and evening hours.
EthnoMed is a
website containing medical and cultural information on immigrant
and refugee groups. It contains information specific to groups in
the Seattle area, but much of the cultural and health information
is of interest and applicable in other geographic areas. The
objective is to make information about culture, language, health,
illness and community resources directly accessible to health
care providers who see patients from different ethnic groups.
developing a digital knowledge base of critically
appraised information to assist primary care providers in using
the best available evidence in their daily management of
patients. The specific aims of the project will help us determine
if a simplification or reduction in the barriers to access and
speed of information retrieval can enhance patient care.
PrimeAnswers is a critical component of a broader initiative at
the University of Washington to create a Clinical Digital Library
that integrates fragmented knowledge dispersed across
heterogeneous sources for health care providers.
Orbis and Cascade,
two successful academic library consortia, have merged to create
the Orbis Cascade Alliance, a private & public collaborative
venture serving faculty and students in Oregon and Washington.
This alliance combines the services of both organizations to
greatly expand the scholarly information made available to
students, faculty, and staff. Members include 26 colleges,
universities, and community colleges throughout Oregon and
Washington. The new union catalog will include over 22 million
books, sound recordings, films, maps and more.
II. Projects and programs
On March 9-11, 2003
the University of Washington Libraries hosted a retreat on
digital scholarship. Made possible through the generous funding
of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the retreat was a watershed
conversation among UW scholars who are deeply engaged in
scholarship and the creation of knowledge that was not possible
before digital technology. These scholars engaged in the
questions surrounding what academic support is needed for
technology-enabled scholarship with a particular emphasis on the
social sciences and humanities. The conversation was scholar
driven and led. Academic, library, and technology planners and
leaders participated in the visioning process as well.
The University of
Washington is one of the original members of the DSpace
Federation. DSpace was implemented in early 2003 and currently
has one user community: the Early Buddhist Manuscript Project.
Potential communities continue to be identified and policies
project is a community-based partnership that is developing
separate online searchable databases of images and metadata for
Museum of History and Industry (MOHAI), UW and each of ten
Association of King County Cultural Heritage Organization (AKCHO)
member groups in the King County, WA area. Each organization is
creating its own website and searchable database of its images,
to which it will retain ownership and control. The entire
collection of websites will also have its own "super website," a
comprehensive online photo research collection for a single
metropolitan area, where scholars, K-20 students and lifelong
learners will be able to access all these databases in a single
search. The Crossing Organizational Boundaries project has
created a training program to enable AKCHO-member group staff and
volunteers to learn how to research and create metadata, select
images for digital projects, address copyright and intellectual
property issues, and choose a fulfillment house or e-commerce
solution for image sales. The project is utilizing CONTENTdm.
Brumfield Russian Architecture WebArchive
As a pilot project,
we are creating a database of 3,000 representative images of
Russian architecture; images range from the earliest extant
church architecture through post-Soviet buildings photographed by
Professor of Slavic Languages William C. Brumfield. The Brumfield
WebArchive project extends beyond standard digitalization and
cataloging to create an innovative digital image resource using
GIS software to enable comparisons of architectural styles,
materials and other attributes across time and geography.
Specific Digital Library Challenges
As we engage in
more and more projects with faculty, the ownership of materials
and systems created becomes more problematic. We have developed
license agreements with faculty in order to obviate problems down
the road as rights management relates to collections; however,
the issues of systems developed with the help of library paid
staff and equipment as part of a grant-funded project still
remain to be ironed out.
Archiving “Born-Digital” faculty
While we are
certainly not alone, the UW Libraries is increasingly being
called upon to accept and preserve documents, web sites, images
and other born digital materials that we are unable to guarantee
will be available in the near term, much less in the long term.
Policies related to the acceptance of these materials in the
absence of cost-effective means to migrate the documents over
time still need to be developed.