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New Collections Showcase Content on Pandemics, Voting Rights

While many new collections have joined MWDL in 2020, we’re going to highlight four in this post. Three pertain to pandemics both past and present, and the fourth to the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage. These are all wonderful examples of MWDL partners using digital libraries to document present history, aggregating existing collections to provide new historical context, and contextualizing local events on the national and global stage.

We hope these few examples demonstrate the amazing work MWDL partners continue to do despite hardship. These collections joined DPLA as they came online and represent the intermountain West in a nationwide pool of resources. The DPLA Black Women’s Suffrage Collection also launched earlier in September and we’re excited to dig into it!

Utah Valley University’s Fulton Library COVID-19 Collection

This new collection features diverse materials from the Fulton Library community. Images, documents, promotional materials, social media posts, and surveys contributed by staff members, students, and other Fulton Library-community members detail life as we all adjusted to the COVID-19 pandemic.

A Fulton Library feline work-from-home companion

Utah COVID-19 Collection (University of Utah)

Have you ever heard of a quaranzine? Neither have we! This is but one of the unique items submitted to J. Willard Marriott Library’s crowd-sourced Utah COVID-19 collection. Beginning in late March, Marriott Library invited submissions from Utahns to document their pandemic experiences. At nearly 800 items and counting, this collection includes photographs, oral histories, protest flyers, digital performance art and more.

1918 Flu Pandemic Newspapers (University of Utah)

Hand The Flu A Lemon !

– Headline of folk remedy article in Salt Lake Telegram, October 9, 1918

Looking back to our last global pandemic, the 1918 Flu Pandemic Newspapers collection gathers articles published between 1918-20 in Utah newspapers on the topic of the Spanish flu. These articles are sourced from Utah Digital Newspapers. A brand-new digital exhibit launched September 28 and adds more context to the story!

Suffrage and Stories of Utah Women

Finally, Utah State Archives mounted a new collection and online exhibit about the history of women’s suffrage in Utah! As the United States celebrates the centennial of women’s suffrage throughout 2020, Utah celebrates 150 years of suffrage. Utah women gained suffrage in 1870 when it was still a territory, a full 25 years ahead of statehood.

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