Fences from the Leslie Jones Collection, Boston Public Library

The Beacon Hill Times reported on historic iron fences in Boston central neighborhoods on August 22, 2019.  In addition to explaining how to care for existing iron fences, the Times advised readers:

If a historic fence is non-existent, he [Joe Cornish, Director of Design Review for the Boston Landmarks Commission] suggested looking for historic images at the South End Historical Society, backbayhouses.org, Historic New England, the Bostonian Society, Digital Commonwealth, and the City Archives. [Emphasis added.]

To prove that the Times and Joe Cornish are not misdirecting you, see fences (like the one on the left) on the Digital Commonwealth website – which includes images from Historic New England and the City Archives, too.  You’ll find fences of iron, wood, concrete, you name it.

Thanks, Beacon Hill Times and Joe, for spreading the word.

Children with basketball
Children with basketball, from Arlington Historical Photograph Collection

Wicked Local Arlington reported June 28, 2018 that they were going to have a Throwback Thursday feature this summer.  And where were they finding their Throwbacks?  The Robbins Library collections on Digital Commonwealth.  They were particularly taken with the photos from the Arlington Town Life series commissioned by the Robbins Library in Arlington from Norman Hurst.  The series contains everyday moments of life in Arlington, like the children with basketball photo on the left.

If you don’t have the patience to check back every Thursday, just hop on over to the Arlington Historical Photograph Collection, c. 1885-1992 from the Robbins Library on Digital Commonwealth.  With over 200 years of history, there should be a photo of interest for everyone!

Map of the Town of Weymouth, Norfolk County, Mass.Weymouth Room and Local History Collections
Map of the Town of Weymouth, Norfolk County, Mass. Weymouth Room and Local History Collections

Digital Commonwealth partners Weymouth Public Library and Lee Library Association were in the news last month.

Wicked Local Weymouth in an article entitled, Weymouth Public Libraries announces programs, reports on the Weymouth Public Libraries adding more digitized items from the Weymouth Historic Collections to the Digital Commonwealth.  Highlights include more items concerning abolitionism and the Civil War, as well as maps of Weymouth dating from 1854 and 1880. The map from 1853 (left) is especially interesting because it marks the locations of houses with the names the residents. The items featured on Digital Commonwealth are a selection of the materials in the Weymouth Room and Local History Collections. Finding aids describing the contents of the collections in detail are viewable online here.  Original materials are viewable in person by appointment.  What’s available on Digital Commonwealth is viewable anytime, anywhere you have Internet access.

South-western view of LeeLee Library Historical Collection
South-western view of Lee Lee Library Historical Collection

The Berkshire Eagle’s article, Lee Library Association: A history lesson, just a click away, extols the Lee Library Association’s efforts to identify, preserve and provide online access to its collection of photographs, postcards and prints.  Over 25 years ago, local volunteers organized and categorized the collection over 5 years.  When Mary Philpott, president of the Lee library, learned about Digital Commonwealth in 2013, she immediately signed up to begin what became a 4-year process of getting the collection digitized.  Digital Commonwealth staff really appreciated all the hard work done by the Lee volunteers.  The more data cultural institutions can supply, the faster Digital Commonwealth can process their collections.  For the Lee Library Association the reward was that their historical collections were no longer “sitting in boxes”. Now everyone with an interest in Lee history can see them.

 First Armenian Mirror Spectator writers and readers reunion from the Project SAVE Archives Banquet and Panoramic Photo Collection.
First Armenian Mirror Spectator writers and readers reunion from the Project SAVE Archives Banquet and Panoramic Photo Collection.

The Armenian Mirror-Spectator posted an article called, “Project Save hosts an afternoon of thanks for donors and supporters” on December 7, 2017.  You may remember Project SAVE from our October 9, 2017 blog post when we highlighted them as one of our new collections from September.  The article mentions, as we did, that Project SAVE had Digital Commonwealth digitize over 200 photographs from their collection as part of their effort to bring “awareness to our work beyond the Armenian community”.  Project SAVE also is collaborating with the USC Shoah Foundation to create educational resources for students of genocides.

Consider adding your collections to Digital Commonwealth if you, too, want to expand your reach beyond your core audience.