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Utah State University (Logan, UT 84322-1400)
Mattie Burkert (Project Director: June 2017 to March 2021)
Katie Dana (Co Project Director: March 2018 to May 2019)

Digital Humanities Advancement Grants
Digital Humanities

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$74,970 (approved)
$64,654 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2018 – 6/30/2019

The London Stage Database

The recovery and revitalization of a unique and important database, supported by NEH and other funders in the 1970s, containing information on theater and popular culture in London in the long eighteenth century (1660-1800).

Obsolescence is a serious issue facing the digital humanities today. Projects can take years to complete, by which time the data and software are out of step with current platforms and file formats. We propose to recover an NEH-funded humanities computing project completed in the 1970s: the London Stage Information Bank. In addition to revitalizing and making available a database of great interest to scholars of eighteenth-century British culture, this project will address three broader goals: (1) model best practices for recovering obsolete digital projects; (2) make visible the Information Bank’s underlying assumptions about the nature of the data itself, fostering awareness of the theoretical underpinnings of humanities databases used today that were begun in the early decades of humanities computing; and (3) create a platform that can interface with other digitization and data collection projects now underway, enabling the future growth of a network of related databases and tools.