Note: The Library of Congress will celebrate its 220th birthday on Friday (April 24, 2020)
To celebrate the 220th anniversary of its founding, the Library of Congress today announced the release of the LOC Collections app, the premiere mobile app that puts the national library’s digital collections in the hands of users everywhere.
In addition to providing an easy, accessible way to search and explore the Library’s growing digital collections, LOC Collections allows users to curate personal galleries of items in the Library’s collections for their own reference and for sharing with others. Items currently featured on the app include audio recordings, books, videos, manuscripts, maps, newspapers, notated music, periodicals, photos, prints, and drawings.
“The Library of Congress collection can now fit in your pocket,” said Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden. “The Library started 220 years ago with 740 books and three maps. Today, that collection has grown to make us the largest library in the world and a storehouse of our national history. It’s been our goal to throw open our treasure chest and help every American connect to the Library of Congress. The LOC Collections app is a uniquely personal, easy new way to explore the nation’s library.”
The LOC Collections app encourages users to explore over a million maps, photographs, films, books, manuscripts, and more in the Library of Congress’s rich collections,” said Michelle Light, director of Special Collections. “Using its intuitive interface and the ability to favorite items, we hope people of all ages will dive in to discover items that surprise, teach, entertain, or satisfy curiosity.”
LOC Collections was imagined and created by the Library’s own design and development experts in the Office of the Chief Information Officer, and is especially designed to give users a more personal experience with Library collections. Usability testing with patrons helped shape the app before its release, with additional functionality and content currently under development.