27 July 2016

New digital platform (Umbra) makes black history archives MORE accessible

New digital platform (Umbra) makes black history archives MORE accessible

Some news from the University of Minnesota … U's new digital platform makes black history archives accessible.

For the first time, the U is starting to make collections like the Givens accessible online. It has launched an ambitious project, called Umbra Search, to make it easy to search not only its own collection, but hundreds of African-American archives across the country. All at once.

Read the article for more details about this project.

The direct link to Umbra is found here.

What can you find? More than 400,000 digital images of African-American history and culture from 500 museums and libraries, including the Smithsonian Institution, the Library of Congress and the University of Minnesota libraries.

The results will be the “found” items based on what you searched on. 

Each find will have a link to the item in the collection where it is found.  The sources are truly a smorgasbord from around the country as you can see from this example of a search on “North Carolina.” Mentioned are many archives that I wouldn’t necessarily think to look to for information on North Carolina such as the Catholic Diocese of Charleston (SC) and which I don’t think are included in Archivegrid.

You will definitely want to check it out!  Any tool that makes any kind of archives accessible is a great tool for genealogists.  Also remember that all materials, even African-American-focused records, have relevance to ALL the parties mentioned in the documents.

What neat find did you make?

What other aggregator gateways that benefit genealogists and family historians are you aware of?

Editor's Note: Other Upfront with NGS blog posts regarding African-American research can be found here.

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