The Libraries began their involvement in the Mellon Foundation grant project Synergies Among Digital Humanities and African American History and Culture in May 2016. This project is a collaboration between the College of Arts and Humanities, the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities (MITH), the Libraries, and the David C. Driskell Center for the Study of the Visual Arts and Culture of African Americans and the African Diaspora. In July, Scott Pennington was hired as the Digitization Project Manager for the project, working with the AFL-CIO collection in SCUA and the David C. Driskell papers, a collection of the artist, scholar, curator, collector, and philanthropist, in the Driskell Center. The project seeks to digitize primary source materials for study by post-doctoral students and other researchers examining the intersection of African American History and Culture.
Scott Pennington, Jen Eidson (SCUA), Stephanie Smith (Driskell Center), Purdom Lindblad (MITH), and Jovonne Bickerstaff (MITH) went through materials looking for items of interest to researchers involved in the upcoming Digital Humanities Incubator sessions to be hosted as part of the larger project. Approximately 1,000 pages were selected for a pilot digitization project and were shipped to the vendor for digitization on November 1, 2016. These materials will be available to researchers and to the public through the Digital Humanities Incubator projects in January, as well as through UMD Digital Collections.
Scott Pennington is currently working with Jen Eidson, Stephanie Smith, and MITH to select an additional 39,000 pages for the full project, to be shipped to the digitization vendor in April.
Samples of content selected for digitization are featured below: