NEH awards University Libraries $290,000 to digitize more historic Maryland newspapers
The University of Maryland Libraries will extend its project to digitize
historic Maryland newspapers, thanks to a $290,000 grant from the National
Endowment for the Humanities.
The award provides funds to digitize and
provide free online access to an additional 100,000 pages of Maryland newspapers
printed between 1836 and 1922. An advisory board appointed to aid in the
selection of titles has identified newspapers from locales across the state,
including Baltimore, Cumberland, Rockville, Frederick, the Eastern Shore and
Eighteen proposed newspapers selected for the project reflect the state’s
geographic diversity, says Jennie Knies, manager of Digital Programs and
Initiatives at the University of Maryland Libraries.
Knies says she hopes
the project will provide researchers with a sense of the regional variation in
perspectives and interests. Newspapers in different parts of the state, for
example, provided contrasting views of the Civil War and its effects on the
lives of Marylanders.
Digital newspaper images will be created from
master microfilm primarily located at the Maryland State Archives in Annapolis.
“By collaborating with the Maryland State Archives, we’re able to offer
not only scholars but also citizens of the state far greater understanding of
Maryland’s past,” says Patricia A. Steele, dean of University Libraries.
The newspapers will complement the urban and immigrant perspective
captured in Der Deutsche Correspondent, the German-language
newspaper that was the focus of the project’s first phase, funded by the NEH
with a grant of $325,000 in 2012. Those papers are now digitized and accessible
at the Library of Congress database
The Maryland project is part of a long-term
national effort supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities and
coordinated by the Library of Congress to develop an Internet-based searchable
database of U.S. newspapers.