Rowan University students are digitizing artifacts from the Miss America Organization in Atlantic City. What a cool public history project!
Here is R. Kenneth Burns at WHYY:
Students at Rowan University are going through a treasure chest of American history that includes jeweled crowns, velvet capes, and a cookbook. It’s 100 years of artifacts from the Miss America Organization.
Students are scanning pictures and other documents in addition to taking pictures of the crowns, trophies, and a Waterford scepter carried by winners for what will become the cornerstone of the new Rowan Digital Collections.
“This is such a great collection for American cultural … and popular history,” said Katherine Turner, a history professor at Rowan who is the project manager for the job.
The physical artifacts are in storage in Atlantic City. Turner said they take up five rooms and are stacked from the floor to the ceiling.
“We’re not sure what all is in there because there’s so much,” she said. “They seem to have kept almost everything.”
The Miss America Organization will continue to retain the physical artifacts, but the digitized artifacts will be available for scholarly use.
Read the rest here.