Libraries and historic preservation societies often have fragile documents that contain important information regarding events that occurred many decades ago. These fragile documents must be handled with extreme care and are to be preserved for posterity. Often,these are worn down by age and can be damaged or destroyed easily. Given the priceless nature of many old documents, it is very important that the data contained in these is safeguarded. This can be ensured via efficient document scanning with the help of a professional document conversion company.
Fragile data scanning requires the use of the latest flatbed scanning technology which can export full colour and also provide high-resolution scanning of delicate documents that need special handling. These documents can be digitally stored and preserved so that future generations can fully enjoy and appreciate the value of ancient documents.
The Indiana Memory Project – a Successful Digitization Endeavour
A team affiliated with the Indiana State University will scan records from Knox County and Vincennes University for a project that is being financed by a nearly $10,000 federal grant. These scanned documents will be then uploaded on Indian Memory, a website hosted by the Indiana State Library. The records for digitizing include early minutes of the board of trustees of the Vincennes University (which was founded in 1806 and is the oldest college in Indiana), and Knox County tax records data from between 1814 and1823. These include meetings presided over by William Henry Harrison who was Indiana’s territorial governor at that time and later became the nation’s ninth president; and correspondence from the first Land Registrar of Vincennes John Badollet dating back to the 1780s. Once these fragile documents are digitized, researchers, genealogists and historians can benefit from them.
Digitization of Manual of Famine Relief and Manual of Calligraphy and Painting
Cambridge University Library recently digitized selections from its Chinese collection to add to its Digital Library site. A book belonging to the19th century,Manual of Famine Relief,was digitized with great care as well as a 17th century book,Manual of Calligraphy and Painting. The latter was so fragile that until digitization no one was allowed to open it. This historic piece is considered the earliest and most beautiful example of multicolour printing in the world. Eight categories of subjects illustrated by 50 different artists and calligraphers with birds, orchids, bamboo and other miscellaneous imagery, each followed by a text or poem can be seen in the revealed pages. The manual was created in the year 1633 by the Ten Bamboo Studio based in Nanjing. It was reprinted a number of times and the specimen at Cambridge is one of the rare complete sets of an early edition in its original butterfly binding.
The increasing number of electronic conversion of rare documents and books worldwide clearly reveals the potential of the document scanning and conversion process. The goal of digitization is preservation and easy access. Ancient and old documents are very delicate and must be handled carefully without causing any damage. Proper digitization and storage of historical material has to be professionally done with the right scanning equipment and experienced technical personnel.