Preservation and Access: Common Heritage

Period of Performance

1/1/2017 - 4/30/2018

Funding Totals

$11,329.00 (approved)
$11,329.00 (awarded)

Remembering World War One: Sharing History/Preserving Memories

FAIN: PY-253034-17

Connecticut State Library (Hartford, CT 06106-1569)
Christine Pittsley (Project Director: May 2016 to June 2019)

Fifteen digitization day events across the entire state of Connecticut to collect materials related to the state and its population’s involvement in the First World War.  The state played a role in the war effort from the beginning as a major manufacturing hub for firearms and as the home of the U.S. Navy’s first submarine base.  The applicant also notes that this history represents diverse communities, as many African Americans from the South and European immigrants came to work in the factories.  Digitized items would be housed in the Connecticut Digital Library, which is also a hub for the Digital Public Library of America. Along with the digitization days, public events would include lectures related to Connecticut and World War I, with a focus on the particular communities in which the events are held.

This  project is based on the commemoration of the First World War. Working with partners across the state, the State Library will conduct Digitization Day events to surface privately held photos, letters and keepsakes that tell the stories of individual men and women who served during the war. These objects and stories are often held by children of WWI veterans and are in danger of disappearing, as younger generations no longer have ties to the people and events associated with these objects. Through digitization we will preserve them for generations to come.

Media Coverage

Remembering World War 1 photo essay/Preserving World War I Memories (Media Coverage)
Author(s): Christine Pittsley
Publication: Connecticut Explored
Date: 3/1/2017
Abstract: A 6 page photo essay featuring WWI objects and stories collected at past Digitization Day events was included in the Spring 2017 issue of Connecticut Explored Magazine. In the Spotlight section of the magazine, there was a short writeup about the project and what we are collecting as well as mention of the project being funded through an NEH grant.