Thursday, December 30, 2010

Sherlock Holmes on U Media

I've talked about the U Media site at the University of Minnesota Libraries in the past (although I can't remember whether or not its been mentioned in this blog). In any event, I thought I'd let you know, before the year is out, that we've started to populate this site with images of items from the Sherlock Holmes Collections.

We started out by uploading a few audio files (two featuring John Bennett Shaw and one featuring Sir Arthur Conan Doyle). We then added a few three-dimensional items (a license plate and pipe). From there we went on to add some things we'd scanned for researchers including a few Strand Magazine covers and some features from the Vincent Starrett copy of the Beeton's Christmas Annual. Next, while we were processing some of John Bennett Shaw's materials we thought we'd scan some of the spines and covers of boxes he used to house this material. During collection processing we tend to discard boxes and slipcovers like Shaw used (in favor of archival boxes) but we didn't want to lose the charm and flavor of John's handiwork on the containers. We've lumped this under the general heading of "ephemera" although there might be another term for this type of material.

Now, just this evening, I finished uploading scans of some of the buttons from Shaw's collection. This is just the tip of the iceberg, but since I'm working at home for a few days while the University is closed over the holiday break I thought I'd put my time to good use and so scanned a bunch of buttons and pins and loaded those images on the laptop before I left the office last week. I'll work on uploading the lapel pin images over the next few days, so keep watching the site.

The other thing I finished a day or so ago was all the metadata for the 250 or so scans we did earlier of artwork from Frederic Dorr Steele. The spreadsheet with all that data was sent on to the good folks in the Digital Library Services department and is now in the que for uploading. I don't know whether or not the images and data will be up before the grand gathering of the Baker Street Irregulars in New York next week, but if not they should be up sometime in early January.

I encourage you to explore the whole U Media site (I'm also in the process of finishing metadata for some 19th century Paris postcards). There are some amazing materials here to discover. In the meantime, if you're interested in seeing all the Sherlockian material I've put up so far just click on this link or use the search box on the U Media site and enter the term "Sherlock Holmes" to get at the material.

Happy New Year from the Sherlock Holmes Collections!

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