Endangered archives blog

1 posts from November 2013

04 November 2013

New online collections – November 2013

This month we have had another six projects go up online, containing over 100,000  images. These projects were EAP054, EAP264, EAP265, EAP503, EAP531 and EAP548.

EAP054 digitised items from Jacques Tousselle’s Cameroonian photographic studio. He was a photographer who worked in Mbouda, West Cameroon. His main business was photographing individual portraits created for identity cards, though he also took family portraits and other scenes. The black and white photograph industry of Cameroon effectively came to an end after 1998 with the introduction of new identity cards. These were issued with instant photographs, removing the largest custom of rural photographers. The project digitised some 20,000 negatives and preserved them for future research. The archive shows some fascinating images and represents a record of life in this area from the 1970s to the 1980s.

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EAP054/1/21 – Image 60

EAP548 is a pilot project which digitised narrative and ritual texts, paintings and other performance related material belonging to the Buchen of Pin Valley, India.
The Buchen are performers of specialist rituals, travelling actors and disciples of the 14th-15th century ‘crazy saint’ Thangtong Gyalpo. They reside in the culturally Tibetan Pin Valley in Spiti, North India. Buchen households possess individual ‘archives’, collections of written story texts, texts of exorcism/healing rituals, thangkas and other ritual paraphernalia. This project surveyed all active and dormant Buchen households and produced a report of their archival holdings. It also surveyed performance related objects such as masks, costumes, statues and musical instruments. A sample of digital images of these items is now available to view on the EAP website.

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EAP548/1/2/2 – Image 1

EAP531 is another pilot project which surveyed manuscripts of the Cham people in Vietnam. The Champa kingdom was eliminated by the Viet in 1720, though their culture remains in the surviving large communities of Cham people in Vietnam. The project surveyed some of these communities along with archives and museums to discover remaining Cham manuscripts. These contain rich information about Cham customs, religious practices, literature and daily activities. Manuscripts still in existence are mainly from 50 to 150 years old. A selection of manuscripts were sent by the project and can be viewed online.

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EAP531/1/2 - Image 133

EAP265 surveyed and digitised Tifinagh rock inscriptions in the Tadrart Acacus Mountains, in south western Libya. Tifinagh is a Tuareg word indicating the traditional writing still in use throughout the Sahara desert. The inscriptions are a remarkable record related to the history, both ancient and modern, of the Acacus Mountains. According to research carried out in other North African regions (i.e. Morocco, Tunisia, Mauritania, Algeria), the age of those scripts range from the second century BC up to recent times. In contrast to what has been done elsewhere the Libyan rock scripts of the Tadrart Acacus had never been the object of systematic investigation. As a result of this project, one of the largest Tifinagh collections available so far has been recorded, creating over a thousand digital images which are now available to view on our website.

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EAP265/1/51 – Image 1

EAP503 digitised notarial records from the city of Riohacha, on the Caribbean coast of Colombia, and the peninsula of La Guajira. These records document the region’s rich commercial and social history. They contain land and property documents, commercial records pertaining to the commercial exchanges among the Spanish, foreigners, and indigenous Guajiros, records relating to the slave trade, such as selling and purchasing of slaves as well as manumission documents (when slave owners freed their slaves). There are also wills and testaments of the most important families of the region, showing the social and political alliances existing at that time. The project also digitised ecclesiastical and notarial records in Lorica, Colombia.

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EAP503/3/1/6 – Image 8

EAP264 digitised the glass plate collections of the Archives for Cinema, Photography and Sound Recording in Mongolia. Over 10,000 glass plate negatives were digitised. These negatives cover an impressively wide range of topics and contain some captivating images.

The collection has images relating to the military, public health, rural life, archaeology, prominent individuals, people who were politically repressed during the 1930s, historical documents, construction works, industrial development, Mongolia's contribution to the victory of WWII, culture, religion and politics. As the original items are fragile the digitisation allows these materials to be accessed without further damaging the glass plate negatives.

This project was recently featured in our previous blog post by Jody comparing 1930’s Mongolia with the present day, you can read this blog to find out more about this fascinating collection.

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EAP264/1/8/11 – Image 57

Check back next month to see what else has been added!

You can also keep up to date with any new collections by joining our Facebook group.