Sunday, February 7, 2016

TRIAL: Primary Sources: Foreign Office Files for the Middle East

The Library currently has a trial for Adam Matthew Digital's collection of FOREIGN OFFICE FILES FOR THE MIDDLE EAST, 1971-1981.

This currently includes only Module 1, 1971-1974: The 1973 Arab-Israel War and the Oil Crisis, which was released in January.

The trial ends February 29. The resource can be accessed at With trial access it is not possible to download documents in the collection.

"Digitising full runs of Foreign Office files from The National Archives, this collection provides invaluable insight into events in the Middle East during the 1970s. Covering events such as the Arab-Israeli War, the Lebanese civil war and the Iranian Revolution, Foreign Office Files for the Middle East, 1971-1981 is an essential resource to help students and researchers understand the modern Middle East. This collection documents UK interests in the internal activities and political relationships of countries such as Egypt, Israel, Syria, Iran, Libya and Lebanon, the oil affairs of nations like Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Algeria and Iraq, as well as participating in military intervention and peace negotiations during key conflicts, and monitoring the UK’s commercial interests. Split chronologically into three modules, Foreign Office Files for the Middle East, 1971-1981 tackles these events using a variety of material, from correspondence between civil servants and embassies, reports and memorandums, to political summaries and personality profiles."

Two more modules will be published in the future:
 • Module 2, 1975-1978: The Lebanese Civil War and the Camp David Accords (Nov 2016)
 • Module 3, 1979-1981: The Iranian Revolution and the Iran-Iraq War (Jan 2017)

Please contact me with your thoughts about the usefulness of this resource.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Digital Humanities: Mapping Occupation

Quoted from the project website:

"Mapping Occupation, by Gregory P. Downs and Scott Nesbit, captures the regions where the United States Army could effectively act as an occupying force in the Reconstruction South. For the first time, it presents the basic nuts-and-bolts facts about the Army's presence, movements that are central to understanding the occupation of the South. That data in turn reorients our understanding of the Reconstruction that followed Confederate surrender. Viewers can use these maps as a guide through a complex period, a massive data source, and a first step in capturing the federal government's new reach into the countryside.

"From the start of the Civil War and through the 1870s, the U.S. Army remained the key institution that newly freed people in the South could access as they tried to defend their rights. While slaves took the crucial steps to seize their chance at freedom, soldiers helped convince planters that slavery was dead, overturned local laws and court cases, and in other ways worked with freed people to construct a new form of federal power on the ground.

"The army was central to the story of Reconstruction, yet basic information about where the Army was, in what numbers, and with what types of troops, has been difficult to find. Downs gathered this information from manuscript sources in the National Archives and other repositories in preparation for his book, After Appomattox: Military Occupation and the Ends of War (Cambridge, Harvard University Press, 2015). Mapping Occupation presents an expanded version of this information in an online interface and as a downloadable data. Downs and Nesbit then used these locations to create rough estimates of the Army's reach and, importantly, the places from which freedpeople and others could reach the Army in order to bring complaints about outrages and other forms of injustice. The methods by which we created these estimates are discussed here.

"Mapping Occupation presents this history and geography in two ways: as a spatial narrative, guiding the user through key stages in the spatial history of the army in Reconstruction; and as an exploratory map, in which users are free to build their own narratives out of the data that we have curated here. Both afford visitors to the site important tools for mapping the Army's reach in the Reconstruction South."

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Primary Sources: Japan Times Archives

Another recent acquisition of the Library is the digital Japan Times Archive, which provides access to the complete run (1897-2014) of this English-language daily published in Tokyo.

The archive contains a reported 490,000 pages of content, from 30,000 issues published over the 117-year history of the newspaper. The Japan Times was the first English-language newspaper in Japan to be put out by Japanese publishers and was for many years the only foreign-language newspaper in Japan. The paper maintained editorial independence for much of its history, though it was used as a propaganda tool for Imperial Japan during World War II. The paper went through occasional title changes, all of which are represented in the archive. The contents include:

The Japan Times (22 Mar 1897–1 Jan 1918)
The Japan Times & Mail (2 Apr 1918–10 Nov 1940)
The Japan Times & Advertiser / Japan Times Advertiser (11 Nov 1940–31 Dec 1942)
Nippon Times (1 Jan 1943–30 Jun 1956)
The Japan Times (1 Jul 1956–present)

Full text searching is enabled because the content has been OCR'd, but as with most digitized newspapers the OCR process is not error-free. You should be flexible in your searching and try variations of words. Read the help information to learn how to construct searches with *, +, and # operators.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Primary Sources: ProQuest Regulatory Insight

The Library has recently acquired ProQuest Regulatory Insight, which contains administrative law histories organized by public law. Created as a companion product to Legislative Insight, Regulatory Insight reveals what happens after a law is passed -- what rulemaking process is undertaken to implement the law. It provides regulatory histories compiled by editors that bring together the various rules and notices associated with a specific public law.

This resource is still being developed and additional content will be added throughout 2016. Currently it includes:
  • ProQuest Regulatory Histories for Public Laws enacted from 2001-2015**
  • Federal Register documents for 2001-present*
  • Code of Federal Regulations from 2001-2015*
The database can be searched by keyword, but more precise results are retrieved if you search using a Federal Register or Code of Federal Regulations citation. You can also search by Public Law number, Statutes at Large citation, U.S. Code citation, Regulation Identifier Number, and agency docket number.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Resource: Kanopy for streaming media

The Library has recently subscribed to Kanopy, an on-demand streaming video service which provides access to more than 26,000 films, including titles from PBS, BBC, Criterion Collection, Media Education Foundation.

It is simple to make clips from these films and embed them (or the full films) in bCourses. Please contact me if you need any assistance with this.

Many films have closed captioning, and Kanopy is in the process of adding more every month. You can limit to only captioned films through Advanced Search. Let me know if you need closed captioning for a particular title, and we can request it from Kanopy.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Primary Sources: The Papers of Andrew Jackson Digital Edition

In the early 1970s the History department at University of Tennessee-Knoxville began a project to make Jackson's papers publicly available. According to their website, the team conducted a worldwide search and "obtained photocopies of every known and available Jackson document, including letters he wrote and received, official and military papers, drafts, memoranda, legal papers, and financial records."

 In 1987 the Project issued 39 microfilm reels that included all known documents that had not already appeared on the Library of Congress or National Archives microfilms. This resource is available at Stanford.

Now they are producing a series of seventeen volumes that will bring together what they consider to be Jackson's most important papers. Volumes I through IX have been published, bringing the series through 1831, Jackson’s third presidential year. Volume X, covering 1832, is now in preparation.

The published volumes of The Papers of Andrew Jackson are available in a digital edition that has recently been acquired by the Library.

 Additional sources of papers you might be interested in:

 The Library of Congress has the largest collection of Andrew Jackson's papers and our collection of 74 reels of their published microfilm is located in Newspapers and Microforms, call number MICROFILM 4007 E. (Two volumes of these have been digitized at the Center for Research Libraries.)

Jackson documents also are included in the federal government records located in the National Archives and are part of the M and T microfilm series.

For the years that the Jackson Project has not yet reached, there is an older seven-volume collection, Correspondence of Andrew Jackson, available in the Main (Gardner) Stacks.

Primary Sources: The Documentary History of the Ratification of the Constitution Digital Edition

The Library has acquired access to the digital edition of The Documentary History of the Ratification of the Constitution, a landmark work in historical and legal scholarship that draws upon thousands of sources to trace the Constitution’s progress through each of the thirteen states’ conventions.

The work is the result of the NHPRC and NEH funded Ratification Project at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, the goal of which is to collect, preserve, publish, and encourage the use of primary documentary sources dealing with the debate over the ratification of the United States Consitution and the Bill of Rights between 1787 and 1791. The project has collected copies of over 60,000 documents, including convention and legislative records, private papers, and newspapers, broadsides, and pamphlets.

The digital edition currently includes these volumes of the Ratification series:
  • Volume I: Constitutional Documents and Records, 1776-1787
  • Volume II: Ratification by the States: Pennsylvania
  • Volume III: Ratification by the States: Delaware, New Jersey, Georgia, and Connecticut*
  • Volume IV: Ratification by the States: Massachusetts, No. 1
  • Volume V: Ratification by the States: Massachusetts, No. 2
  • Volume VI: Ratification by the States: Massachusetts, No. 3
  • Volume VII: Ratification by the States: Massachusetts, No. 4
  • Volume VIII: Ratification by the States: Virginia, No. 1
  • Volume IX: Ratification by the States: Virginia, No. 2
  • Volume X: Ratification by the States: Virginia, No. 3
  • Volume XIII: Commentaries on the Constitution, No. 1
  • Volume XIV: Commentaries on the Constitution, No. 2
  • Volume XV: Commentaries on the Constitution, No. 3
  • Volume XVI: Commentaries on the Constitution, No. 4
  • Volume XVII:Commentaries on the Constitution, No. 5
  • Volume XVIII: Commentaries on the Constitution, No. 6
  • Volume XIX, Ratification by the States: New York, No. 1
  • Volume XX, Ratification by the States: New York, No. 2
  • Volume XXI: Ratification by the States: New York, No. 3
  • Volume XXII: Ratification by the States: New York, No. 4
  • Volume XXIII: Ratification by the States: New York, No. 5
  • Volume XXIV: Ratification by the States: Rhode Island, No. 1
  • Volume XXV: Ratification by the States: Rhode Island, No. 2
  • Volume XXVI: Ratification by the States: Rhode Island, No. 3