(South Hadley view from Holyoke: 1894 – Photo courtesy of MA Digital Treasures)
The Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) brings together libraries, archives, and museums around the country through a massive digital archive system. These archives are available to anyone with internet access. It’s a resource that provides books, images, historical records, and audiovisual materials. Conceptualized in 2010, the creation of the DPLA took two years.
Similar to the DPLA, we here in Massachusetts have a more local source for archival history and digital resources: The Massachusetts Digital Treasures Project. The project was a collaborative effort made by the Central and Western MA Automated Resource Sharing System, and the Central and Western MA Regional Library Systems. Initiated in 2006, it began as a pilot program with a headquarters in Worcester. Massachusetts Digital Tresures now has 36 collections from MA libraries with over 1,300 accessible images.
Browsing the Massachusetts Digital Treasures library gives us all an opportunity to take a look back at and learn about the local history of this state. Through the many photographs available, we are able to see the incredible ways in which places change with the passing of time. This digital library project continues as a collaborative effort among the MA library systems to bring funding, guidance, and expertise to the archives.
(Mt. Holyoke Summit House, North Side – Photo courtesy of MA Digital Treasures)