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Thanks for posting. NARA has a long history of working with partners to increase public access to our holdings. Moreover, we have been working diligently to make records, once they come out of embargo, available via the National Archives Catalog. As of today, approximately 30M partner-digitized images are in the Catalog. If you are not already subscribed, the National Archives Catalog newsletter often highlights newly available records and is a good source for learning more the Catalog - both what it contains and how to best find what you are looking for.
Finally, the press release only references a subset of documents that have been digitized by partners. Was there a specific set of records that you were interested in?
Thank you for your response. I am a weekly volunteer at the National Archives at Seattle, but was not familiar with the Archives Catalog newsletter. I have now signed up for that.
Question - the press release states that there was a five year plan. I'm curious about that particular plan. Is a copy of the plan available to review?
I'm particularly interested in Civil War records and even more specifically the Compiled Service Records (beyond the indexes) for those states that have not been microfilmed or digitized.
Also, I'm intrigued with the Mathew B. Brady Collection of Civil War Photographs (listed as a subset).
Specific plans are not available for review as, at the time they are developed, they may contain information that is not publicly-releasable at the time. That being said, we do have a page that contains a list of the microfilm that has been digitized by partners, links to where the images are available on partner sites, and (once available in the National Archives Catalog) links to the images in our Catalog. That page is here: https://www.archives.gov/digitization/digitized-by-partners
Looking at the page, however, you will see that it is not particularly user-friendly nor easy to search. We are actively working on developing something that makes this information more searchable. As soon as that is live, I’ll share the link here.
As for the Mathew Brady work, we actually also digitized that material in-house for separate purposes and that set of images is available here.
With respect to the several other highlights listed in the press release, a small number of associated images are available in the Catalog though not everything, as the embargo has not yet been met.
Finally, I should also note that partner-digitized images form only a part of what is available in the Catalog and, as of today, we have a total of over 43M digital objects available in the Catalog!
Thanks again for reaching out and I’ll be sure to post an update here when we have the new (and improved) page up for searching partner-digitized images on the site.
Thank you for this thoughtful and insightful reply to my question. I do truly appreciate the knowledge you shared.
I am quite familiar with the link you provided to 'digitized by partners' page. I refer to it often when I'm assisting patrons while volunteering at the archives in Seattle. I would agree with you, that it's not all that user friendly. I look forward to seeing how you re-work the page. The challenge, as you've described, is how users make their way to the digitized images. NARA has made huge strides in digitizing and I look forward to seeing more of this in the future. As a citizen advocate and frequent user of the resources available at archives.gov I can appreciate the work that goes into making information readily available.
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I just wanted to follow up to let you know that the page has been updated. We are still working on the new page but will also post here as well when that is ready.
Here's the link: https://www.archives.gov/digitization/digitized-by-partners
Footnote is now called Fold 3 (Fold3.com)
These are the collections they were talking about:
Papers of the Continental Congress (1774-89) ***Online***
Mathew B. Brady Collection of Civil War Photographs ***Online***
Southern Claims Commission ***Online - Not Free***
Name Index to Civil War and Later Pension Files ***Online***
Investigative Case Files of the Bureau of Investigation, 1908-22 ***Online***
~ Renamed FBI Case Files