George A. Smathers Libraries at the University of Florida were recently awarded supplemental funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to digitize over 100,000 additional pages of historic newspapers.
The $288,000 NEH grant will provide funding support for the “Florida and Puerto Rico Digital Newspaper Project,” which is part of the state’s and territory’s participation in the National Digital Newspaper Program (NDNP).
[Our emphasis] The award supplements a $325,000 grant the Libraries received in 2013, making the total award $613,000, the single largest direct award ever received by the Libraries.
Led by project director Patrick Reakes and project manager Melissa Espino, the project is a collaboration between the University of Florida (UF) Libraries and the library at the University of Puerto Rico-Rio Piedras (UPR-RP). It will provide a national, digital resource of historically significant newspapers published between 1836 and 1922 from Florida and Puerto Rico.
The project provides free, internet-based access to newspapers that are currently available only on aging microfilm. The digitized papers will be available through the Library of Congress Chronicling America, the University of Florida Libraries Florida Digital Newspaper Library, and the Biblioteca Digital Puertorriqueña at the University of Puerto Rico.
“This is really exciting for the grant teams at UF and UPR” said Reakes. “It supplies funding to substantially expand access to these important historical newspapers and provides a long term, sustainable option for archiving them as well. By the end of this portion of the project we’ll have in excess of 200,000 pages digitized and they are all freely available to anyone who wants to use them.”
See Also: Direct to University of Florida Digital Collections