CONTENTdm Responsive Site Goes Live

Temple University Libraries’ Digital Collections site has a new look! We are excited to roll out a responsive version of our existing Digital Collections website. The new software has better mobile and tablet compatibility, an improved image viewer, and is compliant with WCAG 2.0 accessibility guidelines.

You’ll find all of our collections on the website homepage, along with an easily navigable single search bar and advanced search option. You’ll also see a link to “Explore Our Collections,” where you’ll find several options for browsing our collections by repository, by subject, by format, or through our digital exhibitions.

Users can access our Digital Collections through the Temple University Libraries homepage, through the Special Collections Research Center homepage, or by visiting

There will be continuous upgrades and improvements to the software over time, so be sure to look out for new features in the site. If you have any questions, concerns, or would like to suggest new digitization projects, please contact us at

–Stephanie Ramsay
Digital Projects LIbrarian

Future Proofing Civic Data

Exploring the challenges of preserving open civic data for the long term

This past year, Temple University Libraries received a Knight Foundation Grant, “Knight News Challenge on Libraries,” to lead an exploratory research project, Future Proofing Civic Data, investigating the challenges of long-term preservation for open civic datasets.

Open civic data portals, such as OpenDataPhilly in Philadelphia, have been a growing trend in cities, states, and national governments over the last decade. Many governments and other civic partners began developing open civic data initiatives in order to make data originating from governmental agencies and civic organizations easily accessible online for immediate consultation, as well as for data reuse. Datasets can include anything from election results to operating budgets to an inventory of all the trees in a city. The hope is that these portals can help bridge the gap between citizens and government and stimulate civic engagement by making data of relevance to citizens easily accessible online.

However, portals do not always have fully formed or fully implemented plans to ensure the long-term preservation of those datasets, and best practices are yet to emerge in that domain.

The Temple Library project team interviewed over a dozen stakeholders about their use cases and needs and looked at several open civic data initiatives in Philadelphia, Boston, San Francisco, and Pittsburgh, to compare practices and examine real-life examples. We wrote up our findings in a white paper where we explore ten important factors that need to be taken into consideration, if we are to tackle long-term preservation of civic data successfully. We also look at how libraries could take the lead, or at least participate in the process.

Please see the full white paper for more details.

The project team was comprised of Joe Lucia (PI), Rachel Appel, Delphine Khanna, Chad Nelson, Margery Sly, and Gretchen Sneff.

CBS 3 Donates Video Archives to Libraries


Philadelphia, September 26, 2007 – CBS 3 (KYW-TV) will donate its vast Video archives, a virtual diary of the history of the region during the last thirty years, to Temple University’s Paley Library, CBS 3 President and General Manager Michael Colleran and Temple University President Dr. Ann Weaver Hart announced today.

The station’s collection of more than 20,000 videotapes, which includes daily local newscasts and video clips from the last thirty years of Eyewitness News as well as 15 years of the local lifestyle show, Evening Magazine, will be housed in Temple University Libraries Urban Archives and, once catalogued, will be available to students and local residents alike.

Colleran officially presented the videotapes to Dr. Hart in a ceremony held today at Paley Library.

The station’s archival tape contain many of the most memorable moments in Philadelphia history – from the Pope John Paul II’s visit to Philadelphia in 1979 and the Phillies World Series victory in 1980 to the MOVE bombing in 1985 and the Blizzards of 1983 and 1996. Many national and international stories are also included from the Reagan years in the While House to the fall of Communism in Europe.

“The University is honored to be chosen as guardian of what amounts to a historical record of the last three decades of the 20th century in Philadelphia,” Hart says. “We hope that this collection will encourage others to preserve this type of material, so that future generations will have a first-hand account of the times in which we lived.”

“Anyone interested in the history and culture of 20th century Philadelphia must use the incredible resources held in the Urban Archives,” Dean of University Libraries Larry Alford adds. “Those resources are deepest for the first 80 years of the 20th century because of the archives of The Philadelphia Evening Bulletin, which ceased publication in 1982. The KYW footage will fill in the gap of that last 20 years.”

Colleran says that, in addition to chronicling local history, the tapes are also a dynamic example of the evolution of local television since the 1970s. “Not only do we see the evolution of news coverage from the anchor desk to live coverage in the field, but we can witness the birth of a whole new genre in television through Evening Magazine, a program that was imitated across the country and became a precursor to such shows as Entertainment Tonight, Access Hollywood and the celebrity journalism of today.”

The station’s contribution of the tapes to Temple University Libraries corresponds with its relocation earlier this year from its 35 year-home on Independence Mall to its new state-of-the-art High Definition studios in the Spring Garden section of Philadelphia. Coincidentally, this is not the first time astation relocation has benefited the University. When KYW moved from its Walnut Street studios to Independence Mall in 1972, the company donated its building there to the University which used it as a Center City campus for many years.

CBS 3 is part of CBS Television Stations, a division of CBS Corporation.

Watch the CBS 3 (KYW-TV) coverage of this momentous event in Philadelphia history online.

Curious Looks at Artists’ Books

What would a book designed and made by an artist look like? Can glass, soap, plexiglass and other non-paper materials form a book? Why would one need a can-opener when opening a book? These and other questions may be answered by Paley Library’s exhibition of artists’ books from its Special Collections Department and the Tyler School of Art Library: “Curious Looks at Artists’ Books.”

Exhibition location: Main Lobby, Paley Library

Exhibition dates:  November 11-December 31, 2005

2006 Philadelphia Neighborhoods Calendar

A view looking down the Ben Franklin parkway. The Urban Archives of Temple University Libraries has released a 2006 Calendar titled “Philadelphia Neighborhoods,” featuring photographs from the George D. McDowell Philadelphia Evening Bulletin Collection. The Evening Bulletin was a long running newspaper in Philadelphia which closed its doors in 1982. The Urban Archives holds a large collection of clippings and photographs from the newspaper. The calendar features thirteen large and several small black and white photographs of Philadelphia along with text discussing the history of twelve neighborhoods. You can purchase a calendar for $7.00 in the Urban Archives (on the ground floor of Paley Library) or for $7.00 + $2.00 shipping and handling via mail order (PA residents add sales tax). Send checks made out to “Temple University Libraries, Urban Archives” along with your name and address to: Urban Archives Temple University Libraries 1210 West Berks Street Philadelphia, PA 19122