New: Westchester County (New York) Launches Online Digital Archives
More than 9,000 historical photographs and maps stored in archival vaults have been digitized and placed online as part of the newly launched Westchester County Archives’ Digital Collections.
“Every aspect of government needs to be continually improving,” said County Executive Robert P. Astorino. “This digitization project is an example of how technology can be used to upgrade the delivery and efficiency of a government service, while also making it more accessible to the general public.”
The Westchester County Archives collects and preserves county public records and makes them available to researchers. The collection contains more than 60,000 maps, deeds, photos, naturalization records, wills, election records, building plans, estate inventories, court documents, correspondence and minutes of county boards and agencies dating back to 1683 – over 15,000 cubic feet of documents.
“The improved presentation and search function opens up an entirely new venue when it comes to historical investigation in Westchester County,” said Patty Dohrenwend, director of the Archives.
The project was partially paid for through a New York State Archives’ Local Government Records Management Improvement Fund grant and represents several years’ worth of work by staff, project archivists, volunteers and the Department of Information Technology.
“This software allows users to search on several different subjects associated with each photograph, as well as on keywords within the title of the image itself,” said Courtney Fallon, assistant archivist, who spearheaded the development of the Digital Collections. “This capability permits users to quickly find related images at the same time as they are viewing the primary one. It is a powerful cataloging tool.”
About Gary Price
Gary Price (email@example.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com.