07 July 2016

Libraries + Historypin Mapping the History of Rural America

Libraries + Historypin Mapping the History of Rural America

Context is so important to history and history is so important to genealogy.  They are so inextricably intertwined!

That’s why it’s great to read about a new Knight’s Foundation News Challenge grant award winning project involving Historypin and libraries.

The project is called Our Story and “Its aim is to help rural libraries in New Mexico, North Carolina, and Louisiana establish programs that will share and preserve the history of their communities.”

Part of the program will use Historypin’s platform, launched in 2011 as a way to essentially map the past: Organizations and individuals can share photos of what their neighborhoods or towns once looked like. The photos are then grouped into collections and “pinned” to Google Maps. Visitors, in turn, can search for photos by time, location, or subject. And users can also overlay photos onto Google Street View to see just how much a place has changed.

Images + Historical Context + Mapping is an extremely powerful combination as a means of preserving history.

Check out all the winners of the Knight News Challenge (How might libraries serve 21st century information needs).

How have you used Historypin?

What would you like to see your library do to better serve its 21st century users?  Any specific genealogically-related requests?

Editor’s note: Related Upfront with NGS posts -- Explore amazing Olympics photos on a Historypin picture map (2012), National Archives Joins Historypin (2011)

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