Feeling the Love at TDL’s Digital Collections Love-In

Image of a historical valentine's card, featuring a bird and a postcard with the text "Accept my unchaning love." Overlaid on the valentine is the text "Digital Collections Love-In Texas Digital Library"By Elliot Williams, TDL DPLA Service Coordinator

The TDL community really felt the love for digital collections this month!  Our first Digital Collections Love-In, hosted by TDL’s TxHub DPLA Aggregation Service, was a big success.

We wanted the event to be a celebration of digital collections and the work that goes into them, and that’s exactly what it was.  Fifteen people shared their favorite digital collections, exhibits, and repositories that they have worked on to a very appreciative audience.  We had representatives from academic libraries, community archives, public libraries, newspaper archives, and scientific research centers – really showcasing the range of organizations that make digital collections available.

Screenshot of an online exhibit titled "The Galvan Family: an online exhibit"

Screenshot of TAMU-Corpus Christi’s “The Galvan Family” online exhibit, https://tamucc.edu/library/exhibits/s/galvan

A recording of the webinar is available on YouTube and in the TDL repository, if you missed it or want to relive the fun.  Among many other things, we saw:

The complete list of sites that were shared can be found in the event’s community notes & links document, if you’d like to do some exploring of your own.

Screenshot of a digitized item in a repository, item titled "Handwritten list of Dallas Gay and Lesbian Alliance members" and shows a snippet of yellow legal paper with handwriting on it

Screenshot of an item in the Portal to Texas History, whose digitization was funded by The Dallas Way, https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc947417/

One of the most exciting things about the Love-In for me was seeing the connections that appeared between collections and exhibits from different institutions. For example, UNT’s Steve Fromholz collection prompted a mention of related materials held at Texas State.  And DPLA’s Black Women’s Suffrage Digital Collection reminded one attendee of the Suffrage in Texas Expanded (SITE) project at Texas Woman’s University.

Activating those links between collections and institutions is one of the benefits of sharing materials with the Digital Public Library of America through TxHub. The DPLA portal combines metadata about items from institutions across the country, so it is a wonderful way for users and researchers to see those connections and discover new materials related to their interests.  Metadata for materials in the Portal to Texas History has been included in DPLA for many years.  For institutions that host their own digital collections, TDL’s DPLA Metadata Aggregation Service offers a pathway to share metadata about their materials with DPLA.  So whether you host your own collections or share them through the Portal to Texas History, your institution has a pathway to contribute them to DPLA.

Screenshot of the header of the Black Women's Suffrage Digital Collection website

Screenshot of DPLA’s Black Women’s Suffrage Digital Collection, https://blackwomenssuffrage.dp.la/

The first Digital Collections Love-In was so much fun, TDL is already planning another one later this year.  I learned a lot about the collections that are found in all kinds of institutions, and I loved seeing the enthusiasm that our community has for not only their own collections, but also for celebrating the work of our colleagues.

If you are interested in learning more about TxHub and TDL’s DPLA Metadata Aggregation Service, I invite you to visit our website, sign up for our email newsletter, or email us at info@tdl.org.

Posted in digital collections, DPLA, webinar

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