Ohio Memory

Ohio Memory’s Lily Birkhimer, Jenni Salamon, Kristen Newby and Jillian Ramage

Q: Where can you find the largest collection of Ohio newspapers, images of WWI black infantry soldiers and photographs of early 20th Century daily life…online…in one place?

A: Ohio Memory

This month, we had the pleasure of meeting members of the Ohio Memory team. Ohio Memory is managed collaboratively between Ohio History Connection and the State Library of Ohio. The dynamic online resource helps communities share, discover and connect to Ohio’s rich history.

Located in the Ohio History Center, Ohio Memory supports a variety of projects. They partner with 365 institutions across 88 counties in the state and provide a subscription program for 35 members (including many libraries), supporting those organizations in digitizing and sharing historical photos, yearbooks, local newspapers, ephemera and more. In fact, Ohio Memory contains over 700,000 digital images!

 

Grants fund important digitization projects. Little Stories of the Great War: Ohioans in World War I was made possible by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). Through prestigious NEH grant funding, Ohio Memory gives greater awareness to Ohio’s contributions, features content from fifteen cultural heritage institutions across Ohio and provides lesson plans for teachers. Kristen Newby coordinates efforts for this project and told fascinating stories about what she’s learned. She digitized images from Ross County’s Camp Sherman, including images of an all-black military band as well as the camp’s library, the only non-segregated area of the camp. Kristen also uncovered incredible letters from the soldiers, including one that revealed the discovery of a German spy!

 

Newspaper collections are reviewed (and sometimes ironed) before they are sent for digitization

The team is working in partnership with Chronicling America to digitize Ohio newspapers as part of a national initiative and have contributed over 400,000 pages to that website by the end of 2018. Jenni Salamon leads the effort and explained reading newspapers from Ohio’s early days gives readers an interesting perspective. Researchers and the curious can learn what the political climate was like then and how much things have and have not changed today. In addition to Chronicling America, Ohio Memory’s newspaper collection contains over 360,000 pages of free-to-access content, many of which came from the Ohio History Connection’s hardcopy and microfilm holdings, which comprise the largest collection of Ohio newspapers in the world!

 

Glass plate photo negatives from an Ohio Memory collection

Lily Birkhimer manages content and outreach for Ohio Memory. She is responsible for training institutional partners, managing metadata, public inquiries and online selection. Lily is currently digitizing glass plate negatives from the Albert J. Ewing Collection. These delicate materials provide a detailed glimpse into our past. Lily records written information on the plates and their sleeves, and she leverages census information to fill in the gaps and create connections that may have otherwise been lost.

Other Ohio Memory projects include preservation of materials from the Zoar community, LGBTQ collections and information for a World Heritage project. The team contributes weekly to their blog, where you can learn more about special items from the collection and read about topics relevant to current events.

There’s so much to explore and discover. As they are always adding new resources, we’ll be taking a closer look at Ohio Memory, and we hope you do too!

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Learn more about the State Library of Ohio and Ohio Memory’s Shannon Kupfer at our 2014 feature here.

Granville Public Library

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This month, Granville Public Library celebrates its 9th annual train show, a month-long event featuring 8 elaborate, holiday-themed miniature train sets. It’s an exciting and fun event organized by model train buffs, and the show is just one of the many fantastic programs helping to make Granville Public Library a wondrous community asset.

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Anita Carroll, Director

Library Director Anita Carroll has been with the library for three years and shared she is still amazed by positive support and engagement of library patrons. “I love this community!” she explained. It’s clear that the feeling is mutual; Over 90% of Granville citizens are library card holders. The Friends of the Library, a small but mighty group, has raised tens of thousands of dollars to help support technology initiatives. Events are well attended, and support for the library continues to grow.

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The teen area features books, computers and plenty of space to hang out

The library offers a wide variety of programming for audiences of all ages. The library creates summer reading programs for both youth and adults.  A robust teen group meets for First Fridays, an after hours events at the library that has included an 80s themed prom “who-done-it” party, an ugly Christmas sweater party and offsite movie nights.

The community collaborates with the library on a variety of well-received programs. Each year, during Turn Your Screen Off Week, events take place around the town to help people find different means of entertainment, communication and community. The library provides 40% of the programming for the event. Saturday Sprouts storytimes are held at the local farmers market, and the library is working with Kendal Senior Living Communities to provide outreach and materials to their residents.

The library has exciting plans for 2018. In March, they will join the Central Library Consortium (CLC). Granville Public library will be able to provide access to exciting new services and collections.  Further, the library will improve delivery time on held materials, allow patrons to renew their materials online and receive text alerts and accept other CLC library members’ cards.

All of these amazing initiatives and more are met with enthusiasm and passion from Anita and her staff. Granville is a beautiful and vibrant community, and Granville Public Library is the jewel in its crown.

Explore I Spy.. Rudolph’s Reindeer Tracks train exhibit in pictures below:

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Check out the library:

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Ohio School for the Deaf Library

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Established in 1829, the Ohio School for the Deaf serves students from all over Ohio who are deaf or hard-of-hearing. The school has over 200 students from preschool age through high school and also offers a program for graduates called 4PLUS, which helps young adults transition to life after school.

 

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Ohio School for the Deaf library staff Tatum Cook and Nancy Boone

Librarian Nancy Boone began her career with the school as a teacher and worked with students in elementary, junior high and high school before taking on the role of librarian. With help from Library Assistant Tatum Cook, Nancy provides opportunities and programming for all of the students at the school. Tatum joined the library staff earlier this year and is a graduate of Ohio School for the Deaf. She previously worked in the preschool. Student workers also assist with shelving and other tasks around the library.

 

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The OSD Library is a bright, welcoming space for students to enjoy

The OSD Library was built in 2013 and features ample natural lighting, open space and plenty of room for books. Nancy was able to reduce the collection size by using more digital reference tools, but noted that the collection of graphic novels has boomed since she’s been with the library.

Class groups visit the library regularly throughout the week to check out books, work on their reading skills and enjoy story time. They provide programming for high school classes as well, such as information literacy for students studying journalism. The library maintains a flexible schedule to accommodate all levels of students and is open after school hours for the students who live on campus during the week.

 

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Library goldfish greet visitors

Nancy and Tatum create eye-catching, fun displays to engage students, and collections are marked with bright visual aids, allowing students to easily locate materials and navigate the library. The library features a large story time area, where books are read in sign language and acted out by Nancy and Tatum for the enjoyment of the students.

 

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The history of Ohio School for the Deaf is part of the deaf collection

The library maintains a large collection of deaf materials, including books and videos related to deafness, sign language, education and culture. The library also offers DVDs and materials developed by the Shared Reading Project and designed to help parents and tutors of deaf children effectively share books with their children.

The fun environment, special collection and range of services provided by the staff make the library at Ohio School for the Deaf incredibly special.

 

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