The Bigger Picture: Visual Archives and the Smithsonian
Posts tagged with: Web/Tech
- A new Flickr set of the fieldwork of Helmut Buechner is now available from the Field Book Project. [via Field Book Project blog, NMNH and SIA]
- The new Puppetry in America display case is now open at the National Museum of American History. [via O Say Can You See?, NMAH]
- The British Library just released over a million images onto Flickr Commons for anyone to use, remix and repurpose. [via Lynda Schmitz Fuhrig, SIA]
- Ever wanted to know about the history of the Christmas tree? If so, Smithsonian Gardens has the answer. [via Smithsonian Gardens blog, Smithsonian Gardens]
- The U. S. Census Bureau just released Census Explorer, a new interactive mapping tool that gives users easier access to neighborhood level statistics. [via InfoDocket]
- Can wait for it? A glimpse of what the Museum of Science Fiction could look like. [via Underwire, Wired]
- What do you call a mashup of a library and retired food truck? BiblioTrucka of course! The concept is a meant to be a cost-effective new-age mobile library. [via InfoDocket]
- Not something you do every day, moving a 1400 pound Right whale skull at the Smithsonian. [via Around the Mall, Smithsonian Magazine]
- Last chance . . . The Renwick Gallery will be closing to the public after this Sunday, December 8 for renovations and will not open again until 2016. [via Eye Level, SAAM]
- With the holidays imminent, take some advice from the Library of Congress on how to best preserve your digital memories. [via The Signal: Digital Preservation, LOC]
- Speaking of the holidays, the Smithsonian Gardens staff are busy working away at getting the Smithsonian's gardens and buildings decorated to celebrate the season. [via Smithsonian Gardens blog]
- It's official, the new panda cub at the National Zoological Park is named Bao Bao, meaning "precious or treasure" in English. [via Around the Mall, Smithsonian Magazine]
- Recently opened at the National Museum of Natural History is a new space called Q?rius, a first-of-its-kind interactive environment for teens that allows them to connect science with the everyday teen experience. [via The Torch, Smithsonian]
- The Franklin D. Roosevelt Library, in cooperation with Marist College and IBM, just launched FRANKLIN, a free virtual reading room and digital library with 350,000 pages of documents and 2,000 photographs related to FDR and Eleanor Roosevelt. [via Jennifer Wright, SIA]
- A new report out by the Library of Congress and the Council on Library and Information Resources takes a look at the American silent feature films from 1919-1929. [via InfoDocket]
- America's love affair with movies can trace its roots perhaps to The Great Train Robbery, which made its debut in December 1903. [via Media Matters blog, NARA]
Recent discoveries about our Women in Science (WIS) demonstrate the ways our audiences are helping us add more stories to our collections.
As a part of our on-going Women in Science Wednesdays, Effie Kapsalis has highlighted the #groundbreaking efforts of women researchers, inventors, pilots, and professors. In the past months, we have featured “Mrs. Alfred Gibson,” Dora Jean Dougherty Strother (McKeown) and Fern P. Rathe. We have also extended our experiences in crowdsourcing, uncovering more about these women’s lives from our audiences - a seriously amazing outcome, indeed!
You may recall we’ve discussed our fantastic community contributions on Flickr. These efforts helped us identify portions of SIA collections, while refining our knowledge of Smithsonian history. Now, we are excited to turn the page of our collections stories and fill in more details of these Women in Science - with a crowdsourced introduction and more details about pioneering women and Wikipedia.
Introducing Mary Wallihan Gibson.
First, on August 28, we featured an UNKNOWN Woman in Science, “Mrs. Alfred E. Gibson.” We explained that we did not know the details of her name and life – and we asked for your help. By the end of the day, we had gathered information from you in our comments and in tweets with @Smithsonian – special thanks to Erin Ryan and Penny Richards for their sleuthing and deducing.
Mrs. Alfred E. Gibson is Mary Wallihan Gibson, who graduated from the University of Denver. After marrying Alfred E. Gibson in 1910, she settled in the Cleveland, Ohio area. Here she was an active member of Pi Beta Phi, organizing gatherings and sitting on committees. She helped organized and was the first president of the Cleveland Pan-Hellenic Association.
At the time of their 1938 win of the "grand award" from the Lincoln Arc Welding Foundation, Alfred and Mary were "president and stockholder, respectively" of the Wellman Engineering Company. Their prize was $13,941.33 for their paper on "Commercial Weldery." What an achievement – and now we can put a name to her success!
Working Women in Science into Wikipedia
We have continued work in increasing representation of these women and their achievements on Wikipedia. Here are more fascinating facts about three of our Women in Science:
Featured for Women in Science Wednesdays on August 21, Dora Jean Dougherty Strother is another masterful pilot, as well as a human factors engineer. She not only set records in helicopter flight and earned the first PhD in Aviation Science from New York University, she was also a B-29 Superfortress demonstration pilot. Prior to working with Bell Helicopter, Strother served with the Women AirForce Service Pilots (WASP) and registered command over 23 different aircraft. Furthermore, she and fellow WASP Dorothea Johnson Moorman learned to fly the cumbersome B29 bomber in 1944. The aircraft was a more robust version of the Enola Gay and was considered very dangerous, even catching fire midflight for Strother. Within a limited two-week demonstration period, Strother and Moorman proved the aircraft was safe and reliable for men to fly, then trained male pilots to fly it during World War II.
We also were able to nominate Dora Jean Dougherty Strother’s Wikipedia article for the Wikipedia main page section Did You Know? It was successfully featured on Monday, September 16, 2013. Based on that main page exposure, Strother’s Wikipedia article was viewed 3817 times in one day! Her story was also expanded through efforts of other Wikipedia editors.
Furthermore, we discovered that two of our WIS worked together at the University of Chicago in the department of Zoology! Marie Agnes Hinrichs ( August 7, 2013) was an Officer of Instruction as an Assistant, while Libbie Henrietta Hyman ( June 12, 2013) served as a Research Associate in Zoology in 1919. Hinrichs later went on to earn her doctorate and moved from Research Associate in Physiology (1931) at the University of Chicago to Associate Professor and Head of the Department in Physiology and Student Health at Southern Illinois University (1938).
A resounding "Thank You" to our readers for your help and enthusiasm. We look forward to sharing more of our collections stories with you and continuing to make discoveries together!
If you have more information to share about these women or other scientists we’ve featured, please let us know in the comments. You can also help SIA build and improve Wikipedia articles for these women and our wide-ranging collections.
- A video conversation 'Thank You" from Lesley Parilla and the Field Book Project for its Digital Volunteers who helped transcribe a field book on Honeycreepers by Martin Moynihan. [via Field Book Project blog, NMNH]
- In time for World AIDS day on December 1, a massive online archive of AIDS posters is now available. [via InfoDocket]
- This past week people around the country celebrated Thanksgiving with their friends and family. Find out how the holiday was celebrated from a soldier during the Civil War to those serving in the military away from home, as well look at the strangeness of the presidential turkey. [ via The Torch, SI; O Say Can You See?, NMAH; and Raw File, Wired]
- Europeana celebrated its 5th anniversary and the arrival of its 30 millionth cultural object, two years ahead of schedule! [via InfoDocket]
- In a remarkable coindicence, a new book of self-portraits by Vivian Maier comes out the same year that "selfie" was named the word of the year by Oxford Dictionaries. [via Colossal]
- Instant access! Check out the National Museum of American History's Founding Fragments - a new series of short videos that delves into the storage cabinets and drawers to find an interesting object that illuminates a small piece of the American story. [via O Say Can You See?, NMAH]
- Just in time for Thanksgiving, the National Archives has digitized and made available online 5 Thanksgiving related videos. [via InfoDocket]
- More action going on at the construction site of the National Museum of African American History and Culture as a 1920s 44-seat Southern Railway segregated train car and a 1930s guard tower from the Louisiana State Penitentiary were lowered into place in the future museum. [via The Washinton Post]
- You've built it, now how useful is it to users . . . A look at the scholarly uses of digital collections. [via The Signal: Digital Preservation, LOC]
- Coinciding with the 150th anniversary of President Lincoln's Gettysburg Address is Jonathan Hennessey's new book, The Gettysburg Address: A Graphic Adaptation, which presents the story of the Civil War in graphic novel form. [via Library of Congress Blog]
- What is a November without talking about moustaches and facial hair, the Archives' Courtney Bellizzi, explores this very topic over at the Smithsonian Collections Blog.
- That looks a little wrinkled . . . Learn about the process of unrolling, flattening, and conserving a piece of airplane fuselage fabric from World War I. [via AirSpace blog, NASM]
- Last weekend the Smithsonian American Art Museum hosted a hackathon to reimagine the digital interpretation in the museum's visible storage facility, for a look at the people's choice winner, see the video below. [via SAAM]
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