Friday, April 29, 2016

2016 MWDL Member Spring Repository Meeting and Digitization Committee Meetings - Save the Dates!

The dates for the MWDL Member Spring Repository Meeting and Digitization Committee Meeting will be Monday, June 13th, and Tuesday June 14th, at the Rio Grande Depot in Salt Lake City.

The Member Repository Meeting, for representatives of member repositories only, will be held on the 13th,  beginning at about 1:00 p.m.

The Digitization Committee Meeting, open to all MWDL collections partners and potential partners, including member repositories, will follow on the 14th, starting at 9:00 or 10:00 a.m. and ending around 3:00 p.m.

More details will be available very soon. 

Thursday, February 11, 2016

MWDL's Best Practices for Geospatial Metadata Creation now available

If you're interested in having your digital collections materials show up on the map interface provided on the Digital Public Library of America portal, start planning to add geospatial metadata to your records! The Mountain West Digital Library Geospatial Discovery Task Force spent many months reviewing different options, and now Best Practices for Geospatial Metadata Creation for MWDL Cultural Heritage Digital Repositories and the companion document, Instructions for Assigning Geospatial Metadata Using, have been approved by the MWDL Digitization Committee and are available for MWDL partners to use.

GeoNames data for Idaho State Capitol.
The new MWDL documents are on the “Policies and Guidelines” page on the MWDL website.  Please feel free to point people to the page or to the particular links above and on the page in any of your websites or documents. We want to continue to get the word out about these valuable standards.

We were delighted to see the recent Geographic and Temporal Guidelines that the Digital Public Library of America released about geospatial metadata in DPLA.  It looks like the MWDL Task Force's documents are well in line with DPLA’s Guidelines -- not too surprising, given the high level of coordination MWDL’s task force had with DPLA staff throughout our work!

Congratulations again to all task force members on fine work. An especial big thanks goes to the co-facilitators of the Task Force: Liz Woolcott from Utah State University Merrill-Cazier Library and Kristen Jensen from the Utah Department of Heritage and Arts.  The strength of what we have produced together is the best example of why we all collaborate. 

Saturday, November 21, 2015

New tools for rapid auditing of your collections metadata

A few months back, we learned about some useful tools for metadata auditing. The North Carolina Digital Heritage Center shared these tools with other Service Hubs in the Digital Public Library of America network, including MWDL. I customized NCDHC's tools to reflect the required and recommended fields in the MWDL Dublin Core Application ProfileWe have started to use them to audit metadata for new collections submitted for aggregation into MWDL, and they really speed up this process!

Now our collections partners can use them as well for their own metadata auditing while creating or revising collections. These tools make it easy to examine the Open Archives Initiative (OAI) provision of metadata from your digital assets management system, so you can check it for conformance to MWDL and DPLA standards. They display the OAI data in an attractive, easy-to-read format, so you don't have to pore through records one by one or look at hundreds of lines of tagged XML. 

Go to MWDL's site for the DPLA OAI Aggregation Tools and speed up your metadata auditing!  So far, I have adapted them for use with the Qualified Dublin Core metadata format, specifically CONTENTdm's "oai_qdc". We will release them for simple Dublin Core ("oai_dc") soon. 
  1. QDC Mapping Checker shows the values by field for all records in a given collection.
  2. Required Data Checker shows any missing values for required and recommended fields in a given collection. 
Let us know what you think, and new functionality you would like to see to make checking your metadata faster and easier. Contact me at with your comments.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Need funding to digitize another collection?

Cultural heritage organizations in Utah may want to consider applying for a digitization grant from the Utah State Historical Records Advisory Board (USHRAB). The next deadline is December 18. Contact Janell Tuttle,, (801) 531-3845, for more information or check out

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

New self-guided curriculum for digitization

As part of the Public Library Partnerships Project over the last year and a half, Mountain West Digital Library staff and partners helped design, prepare, and present training modules about digital skills training. MWDL was one of four Service Hubs in the Digital Public Library of America to participate in this national project. 

First we presented the trainings at three workshops for public librarians, two in Utah and one in Montana, as part of the MWDL network's assistance to public libraries in digitizing and sharing their collections online. Then, along with staff from the other Service Hubs, we recorded the best-of-the-best of the training modules for online distribution nationally. 

Many thanks go to Anna Neatrour, who as MWDL Metadata Librarian created a wonderful metadata section and contributed to much of the rest of the curriculum as well. We are also grateful to Jennifer Birnel, the project director of the Montana Memory Project, who helped make the workshop in Montana a great success and participated in the recording round. Thanks also go to Rebekah Cummings, who helped create and present many sections of the curriculum during her service as MWDL Assistant Director/Outreach Librarian. Key contributions to the digital reformatting module came from Matt Brunsvik from University of Utah Marriott Library and Catherine McIntyre and Brent Seavers from Utah Valley University. Together we are very proud to have been part of this important project and to now be able to share these training resources!

For more information about the new curriculum materials, or about the Public Library Partnerships Project, see the announcement from DPLA at  Please use, re-use, and distribute these materials freely!

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Recent new collections added to MWDL

First of all, let's welcome Stacks from the Idaho Commission for Libraries to the MWDL! We are still working on some additional technical troubleshooting that needs to be completed before we harvest the entire repository, but right now we have over 18,000 of the 27,000 Idaho government documents offered by Stacks. These records complement our existing government documents collections from Utah, Arizona, and Montana. The Stacks page on the MWDL web site lists the currently available collections from this repository.

Other new collections are:

Salt Lake City (UT) Tax Assessment Rolls from Utah State Archives

Brian Head Ski Resort Photographs from Southern Utah University

Friday, June 5, 2015

National Doughnut Day!

It is National Doughnut Day today, and MWDL is bring you plenty of doughnut-related materials!

Did you know that MWDL has photos of the process involved in making handmade doughnuts from start to finish, thanks to the Utah State University Grouse Creek Cultural Survey: Mormon Buckaroo Territory:1985 collection? Take a trip back in history and explore doughnut making in 1985.

Tami Tanner with homemade doughnuts
MWDL also has some Olympic-related doughnuts in the collection of pins from the Salt Lake City Olympics, via the Utah State Historical Society's Utah 2002 Olympic Legacy collection.

Pin, sprinkle doughnut

Have you had a doughnut today?

Monday, May 18, 2015

So many new collections!

We've been adding a ton of new collections in the past several weeks, thanks to the grant programs (Digital Services Mini-Contracts and Public Library Partnerships Program) that provided additional support for new digitization programs from the Digital Public Library of America, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Many MWDL partners were also adding new collections as part of their regular spring work as well! For a quick overview of what's been happening recently, you can take a look at the recently updated Ingestion Status page, scroll down for current activity.

I usually take the time to feature some of my favorite new items from new collections, but there are so many to post right now, I'm just going to list the collections individually. But I encourage you to click through and visit these great new digital resources!

Arizona Memory Project 

Robert Lenon Map Collection 
Posters and Artwork of the Federal Government - World War II

J. Willard Marriott Library

Utah Administration Code - with the Utah Division of Administrative Rules - Digital Services Mini Contract

Montana Memory Project

History of the Missoula (MT) Public Library - PLPP Project

Salt Lake Community College

Additional items added to Salt Lake Community College Photograph Archives - Digital Services Mini Contract

Southern Utah University PLPP Project 

Dwellings in the Bosom of Emery County (UT) with Emery County (UT) Public Library and Emery County (UT) Archives PLPP Project

Additional items added to Emery County (UT) History Photographs - Digital Services Mini Contract

Weber State University

Ogden (UT) Buildings by Street 
Weber State Student Oral History Projects 
Civilian Conservation Corps Camp Photos
Weber State University History in Your Attic Collection 
 Como Springs (UT) Resort with Morgan County (UT) Historical Society and Morgan County (UT) Public Library - PLPP Project
Tremonton Historical Photographs with Tremonton City (UT) Library- PLPP Project

Utah State University

Lewiston City (UT) History Collection with Lewiston City (UT) Public Library -  Digital Services Mini Contract Project
Newton and Cache Junction (UT) Historical Collection with Newton Town (UT) Library - Digital Services Mini Contract Project
Cache County (UT) Aerial Photograph Collection - Digital Services Mini Contract Project
North Logan (UT) History Collection with the North Logan City Library - Digital Services Mini Contract Collection  

Utah Valley University 

Utah Technical College Women's Association Scrapbooks 

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

New Collections from the Salt Lake City Library and the Lifestory Library Foundation

Today we have two more new collections to highlight. Both of these collections were supported by expanded funding offered to MWDL partners through DPLA, with one being a Public Library Partnerships Collection and the other from our recent round of Digital Services Mini Contracts.

Both of these partners worked with the great team in Digital Operations at the J. Willard Marriott Library.

The Salt Lake City Library collection features postcards, a historical reflex of Salt Lake City, and the Official Coat of Arms of Salt Lake City!

If you like oral histories, you will enjoy browsing the Life Story Library collection of audio files, photos, and documents that tell personal histories.

Congratulations to everyone who worked on these collections!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Recently Added Public Library Partnerships Project collections from Montana Memory Project

Working with Digital Public Library of America and Mountain West Digital Library service hubs to develop a curriculum and support for new collections from public libraries was a large focus of MWDL work for the past several months. It is great to celebrate the work that went in to creating these wonderful new collections, now available in the MWDL!

Here are new collections from the Montana Memory Project cohort of the Public Library Partnerships Project.

From the Hobson Community Library, Early Agriculture and Homesteading in Judith Basin County (MT)

As you would expect from the name of the collection, there are some great photos of agricultural work and homesteading families in this collection. Here is my favorite photo from the collection, because the description on the back of it is so wonderful:

Child Riding On Calf
 The description for the photo is,  "Jamie rides every calf we have regardless of how many times they throw him."

The Roundup School-Community Library partnered with the Musselshell Valley Historical Museum to curate a collection of historic photos that cover the range of activities for people living in the Musselshell Valley area. Browse photos of mining, ranching, and farming, as well as photos of local schools and events in the Musselshell Valley Historical Museum Photographs collection.

Oxen drawn Wagon in Parade on Main Street

The third collection from Montana that we have to highlight is from the Judith Basin County Free Library. This collection focuses on sheep ranching in the Judith Basin area.

Lambs Grazing in the Little Belt Mountains

Monday, April 6, 2015

Recently added collections from Utah Valley University and Arizona Memory Project

We've been adding a bunch of new collections and partners to MWDL recently! Here are some new collections for you to explore.

From Utah Valley University Library:

Utah Valley University Course Catalogs - Explore some institutional history with these course catalogs. Just how many names has Utah Valley University had since it was founded?

J. Clayton Tullis Utah State Capitol Collection - Wonderful historic postcards of the Utah State Capitol.

Eagle Gate looking towards Utah State Capitol Building in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Harry Bolam Saltair Photographs -Take a trip back in time to an abandoned place with this collection of 9 photos of the Saltair resort on the Great Salt Lake in 1965. The resort was destroyed by arson in 1970.

'Saltair Land' remnant at Saltair Resort.

We also added some wonderful art and architecture collections from the Arizona Memory Project!

Selections from the Heard Museum Masterworks Arts and Artists Series - Explore Native American Fine Art with this selection of items from the Heard Museum.
Rena Begay and Martha Albrecht
Jane Karl Mid-Century Modern Architectural Renderings - Mid-Century Architectural Renderings from a trailblazing woman.

Arizona City Ranch C Elevation, Terra Cotta Tile Roof with Person in Carport

Chris-Town Shopping Center - 24 Arizona Heritage Portraits - Arizona Heritage Portraits by Roger Whitney. These portraits were originally displayed in the Chris-Town Shopping Center and were then donated to the Arizona State Capitol Museum.

Portrait of Juan Bautista de Anza
Check back soon for more new collections!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Two New Collections from Utah Valley Univesity - Visit Historic American Fork and Fillmore

The folks at Utah Valley University have been hard at work digitizing new collections!

The American Fork City Public Library created a great collection for the Public Library Partnerships Project, the American Fork City Royalty Collection. Now you can learn more about the history of American Fork in the newly available Historical American Fork collection.

Main Street American Fork, Utah, Looking toward Mount Timpanogos 1957

UVU also worked with the Utah Territorial Statehouse State Park Museum to make available treasures from their collection. Browse photos from family albums, historic buildings, and more when you explore historic Fillmore from the early to mid 1900s in the Utah Territorial Statehouse State Park Museum Collection.

Young Woman on 'Miss Pioneer of West Millard' Parade Float.

These collections were made possible with funding from the Digital Public Library of America and the National Endowment for the Humanities.