DePauw digital library provides window into community's past
GREENCASTLE -- Wonder what a gym top circa 1927 looked like?
Want to see a photo of the DePauw University 1914 freshman class?
Now, it can happen with the click of a mouse.
DePauw University's library has launched a digital library, which currently contains more than 30,000 photographs, publications and other artifacts spanning the history of the university, Putnam County and Indiana United Methodism.
With the growing collection of objects from DePauw University archives, university galleries and museums and student publications, the DePauw Digital Library (DDL) makes a wealth of material instantly accessible to anyone both near and far.
"We want people to discover our resource," said Wesley Wilson, coordinator of archives and special collections at DePauw. "Explore it. Spend time searching it."
The searchable database, which took two years to build, includes all issues of The DePauw dating back to 1932 and photographs from DePauw's archives and the late Greencastle photographer Ralph Taylor.
One of the driving forces behind the creation of a digital library was the donation of more than 500,000 negatives of Taylor's pictures, Wilson noted.
Taylor was a DePauw alumnus who was also a local photographer for more than 30 years. His collection contains photographs of seniors from all local high schools, weddings, the community and the university.
The site, which was built by the Digital Library Planning Group, will continually be updated. It is considered a supplement to the libraries and archives.
"It is another way for people to learn about DePauw's history, traditions and art collections," said Rick Provine, director of libraries.
The late Worth Tippy, a DePauw graduate and Methodist minister, started the archives collection in 1951, while in his 80s. Since the university was founded in the Methodist faith, Tippy used the archives as a way to tie the two together.
Anyone searching the DDL can download pictures or order them online or by visiting the Roy O. West Library, 400 S. College Ave.
"It is possible to download the photos," said Wilson. "But for the highest quality, people should contact us for copies."
Some pictures are currently missing information. Anyone who can provide the information is encouraged to e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
The Digital Library Planning Group is available for presentations to clubs, organizations or schools. To schedule a presentation, e-mail the above address.
Visit the collection at http://digital.library.depauw.edu