2009/10/13 at 6:53 pm Utzi iruzkina

There are many digital libraries all around the world. They all are very well known but in this article I’m going to mention only on two of them:  on the one hand, The British Library (BL) and on the other hand, the Darlington Digital Library; in which I’m going to center the most.

The British Library (BL): the national library of the United Kingdom

The British Library is one of the biggest research libraries in the world. It is situated in the city of London. It possesses over 150 million articles which are in different languages and formats (books, journals, newspapers, sound and music recordings, magazines, maps, etc.).

The Darlington Digital Library

As it is said in its web: “The Darlington Digital Library was created from the first major collection of books, manuscripts, atlases, and maps donated to the University of Pittsburgh. Most of the credit for assembling the Darlington Collection rightly goes to William M. Darlington, an attorney by profession who was born in Pittsburgh in 1815”.

The Darlington Digital Library has at its disposition: three librarians, three scanning technicians and also, some graduate students who are studying Information Science at the University of Pittsburgh.

It has digitalized materials which are divided into the following categories: atlases, books, broadsides, images, manuscripts and finally, maps.

  • Atlases: it is possible to find more than one hundred volumes embracing from world travel and exploration to state atlases with county maps.
  • Books: William M. Darlington stored works which were related to: the settlement of colonial America, local history, and the behavior and habits of American Indians. Moreover, he also collected some books about Pittsburgh and other ones written by different authors from Pittsburgh.
  • Broadsides: we can find items or articles of a great historical value. Among those items, it is possible to find a statement made by George Washington (the first president of the United States of America). Among these broadsides, we can also find some ads from theaters in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia.
  • Images: in regards to this category, we can find:   engravings, lithographs, and photographs. As if it were not enough, we also have the opportunity to contemplate images of royalty, of political leaders, inventors and also religious and military figures; most of them from the United States or Europe. These figures are for example: Marie Antoinette, Oliver Cromwell, Benjamin Franklin, Andrew Jackson, Abraham Lincoln, Napoleon, etc. This collection also includes images of a wide range of historical events like the Battle of Champlain, the Battle of New Orleans
  • Manuscripts: there are many letters which are connected with some considerable figures of the history of the USA. But also, letters which are written by famous military figures, political leaders and businessmen.
  • Maps: many of them, are maps of states, colonies and bigger regions of the USA. It’s important to bear in mind, that most of them are printed and enriched through watercolor painting.

Some specifications:

As it is correctly explained in the official web page of THE DARLINGTON DIGITAL LIBRARY:

Depending on the material’s nature, this is digitized at 400ppi, or at 8-bit grayscale. Besides, digital master files are saved as uncompressed TIF images.

Metadata which supports the online books and atlases are based on the Text Encoding Initiative Document Type Definition. While metadata for the broadsides, images, manuscripts and maps are based on the Dublin Core and local practices.”


.The British Library. In The British Library, explore the world’s knowledge. Retrieved 15:30, October 10, 2009, from:

.British Library. (2009 October 9). In Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Retrieved 15:47, October 10, 2009, from:

.List of digital library projects. (2009, September 17). In Wikipedia, the Free encyclopedia. Retrieved 16:33, October 10, 2009, from

.The Darlington Digital Library. (2007). In The Darlington Digital Library. Retrieved 16:55, October 10, 2009, from:


Entry filed under: Edición Digital, Littera. Tags: , , , , , , , .

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