The Computer History Museum (CHM) announced today that it is a recipient of a 2014 Cataloging Hidden Special Collections and Archives award from the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR). The Museum was awarded $274,560 to minimally process 26 of its most significant yet hidden collections, totaling 1,944 linear feet of material. Grant funds will be used to hire two full-time archivists for two years who will utilize the help of Museum volunteers to make this material publicly available as quickly and efficiently as possible. The Museum’s project was one of only 19 selected from a pool of 92 applications.
The Museum archive contains many important collections that scholars currently have no access to due to the lack of publicly available descriptive information. This processing project will process 45 percent of the current archive backlog, including four of the five largest unprocessed donations received to date. The project will be a giant leap forward in providing access to these collections by making them available via the Museum’s online catalog as well as consortial databases.
“The collections included in the funded project represent a deep and broad addition to the available documentation of the Information Age and its ongoing impact on society,” says Senior Archives Manager Sara Lott.
This will be the last group of projects supported by the Cataloging Hidden Special Collections and Archives awards program. Created in 2008 and supported by ongoing funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the program has awarded 129 grants totaling about $27.3 million. As of June 2014, the program had funded the creation of a reported 3,240 finding aids and collection-level records; the processing of a reported 46,596 linear feet of archival materials, plus processing for an additional 3,747 cubic feet of materials; the creation of 82,587 new MARC records; and the creation of item-level metadata for another 209,527 items.
The Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California, is a nonprofit organization with a four-decade history as the world’s leading institution exploring the history of computing and its ongoing impact on society. The Museum is dedicated to the preservation and celebration of computer history and is home to the largest international collection of computing artifacts in the world, encompassing computer hardware, software, documentation, ephemera, photographs, and moving images.
The Museum brings computer history to life through large-scale exhibits, an acclaimed speaker series, a dynamic website, docent-led tours, and an award-winning education program. The Museum’s signature exhibition is “Revolution: The First 2000 Years of Computing,” described by USA Today as “the Valley’s answer to the Smithsonian.” Other current exhibits include “Charles Babbage's Difference Engine No. 2,” “IBM 1401 Demo Lab,” “PDP-1 Demo Lab,” and “Where To? A History of Autonomous Vehicles.”
The Council on Library and Information Resources is an independent, nonprofit organization that forges strategies to enhance research, teaching, and learning environments in collaboration with libraries, cultural institutions, and communities of higher learning.