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University Library Receives Grant to Make More Hoosier History Accessible


June 24, 2009

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IUPUI University Library, in collaboration with Conner Prairie, received a Library Service Technology Act (LSTA) digitization grant for over $11,000 to create the museum’s newest online digital collection entitled: “Conner Prairie’s Traditional Crafts: Preservation and Reproduction.”

The digital collection will make more of the organization’s resources accessible online to the public, especially Hoosier K-12 students.

While the collection will highlight artisan crafts such as pottery making, arms making and blacksmithing, it also emphasizes the role of museums in preserving age-old skills through teaching, reproduction and research, explains David Lewis, dean of the University Library.

Over the next12 months, the library’s Digital Libraries Team will use 3D imaging technology to photograph approximately 85 artifacts from the collection at Conner Prairie. Most of these objects date back to the 1800s and are extremely fragile

The library team will also scan archived editions of Conner Prairie’s “Voice of the Hammer” and “The Art and Mystery of Blacksmithing” publications for inclusion in the collection. The addition of three short videos, featuring artisans demonstrating and talking about the history of their craft , will make the digital collection a comprehensive online resource.

The University Library will also collaborate with the School of Education at IUPUI to create K-12 standards-based lesson plans and evaluation/assessment components for the collection, making it a valuable teaching aid for classroom instruction.

“Conner Prairie is pleased to join with IUPUI University Library on our third collaborative effort. We appreciate the opportunity to continue our excellent and mutually beneficial relationship with the University Library by fully committing our efforts to the Conner Prairie Traditional Crafts Project as part of the LSTA Grant,” says Tim Crumrin, Deputy Director, Museum Experience at Conner Prairie.

In the past, University Library has worked with Conner Prairie to digitize the museum’s collection of quilts, coverlets and sampler and most recently its historical clothing and textile collections. The historical clothing collection will become available on-line in July 2009.

Located at 755 W. Michigan Avenue in the heart of the IUPUI campus, the University Library is a public library, serving the people of Indiana as well as the university population.

Any resident of Indiana is eligible for an IUPUI University Library card. Resources and librarians are also available online at