Explore Tennessee’s Past through its Newspapers

NashvilleUnionThe Tennessee Newspaper Digitization Project (TNDP), a partnership between the UT Libraries and the Tennessee State Library and Archives, has received a second grant to digitize another 100,000 pages of microfilmed historic Tennessee newspapers.

The TNDP is like a time machine to Tennessee’s past, allowing students, teachers, genealogists, and history buffs to consult the primary sources — the newspapers that reported the news as it happened.

A statewide panel of historians, genealogists, educators, librarians, and journalism scholars selected the newspapers that are being digitized and made freely available on the web. The selection covers the broadest scope possible, encompassing the state’s three Grand Divisions, featuring Confederate and Union papers, and representing diverse political perspectives. Selected newspapers were published between 1836 and 1922.

The Tennessee Newspaper Digitization Project is part of the National Digital Newspaper Program, a long-term effort to develop an Internet-based, searchable database of all US newspapers with descriptive information, and select digitization of historic pages. The project was made possible by support from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Library of Congress.

This rich digital resource is developed and permanently maintained at the Library of Congress, and is made freely available to the public through the Chronicling America website, chroniclingamerica.loc.gov. The Tennessee Newspaper Digitization Project has already contributed more than 84,000 pages to Chronicling America.


Delve into your history and help us make the historical record more accurate! View the collection of Tennessee newspapers at tndp.lib.utk.edu, and register to correct text that the optical character recognition (OCR) process is unable to accurately identify. This will help improve the accuracy of search results.

Follow the latest news from the Tennessee Digital Newspaper Project at www.lib.utk.edu/tndp/news/.

“Trace” Online Archive Just Logged its One-Millionth Download

trace_1millionDL-01_smallThe University of Tennessee Libraries is one of many research libraries that now provide a platform for scholars to publish their research and creative work online. UT’s digital archive, dubbed Trace (for Tennessee Research and Creative Exchange), this week reached and surpassed ONE MILLION downloads of scholarship by UT researchers.

More than 600,000 of those downloads occurred over the past year, indicating that Trace — which was launched only three years ago, in September of 2009 — is fulfilling its mission to expand access to the university’s intellectual capital. Free online access via Trace makes UT research and scholarship easily discoverable anywhere in the world.

“Trace offers a digital space for collaboration on an international level, increasing the reach and potential influence of scholarship created at the University of Tennessee,” according to Holly Mercer, associate dean for scholarly communication and research services at the UT Libraries.

Trace brings together in one place the work produced by the UT community and gives faculty a place to share their published and unpublished work. If a researcher wishes to share research results more quickly than a journal article can wend its way through the peer review process, Trace provides a convenient venue. Faculty can create individual webpages to showcase their scholarship, and Trace reports to authors how often their individual works are accessed. Additional features facilitate the publishing of electronic journals and the hosting of conferences.

Not only are Trace collections being accessed more frequently by the scholarly community, UT’s contributing authors increasingly use Trace to share their articles, data sets, multimedia works, and image collections. Approximately 7,500 of the more than 14,750 items in Trace were uploaded over the past year.

Trace also functions as a permanent repository that preserves the work of UT scholars and researchers. With goals of collecting digital content in a variety of formats, organizing it to make it discoverable and preserving it to assure digital file stability, long-term usage, and security, Trace allows any member of the university community to deposit work regardless of genre or format. It also allows depositors to affirm their own copyright ownership and, at the same time, extend nonexclusive rights for noncommercial use.

“The library has always been a trusted archive for the end products of scholarship, and Trace continues that mission,” notes dean of libraries Steve Smith. “Trace is helping UT advance knowledge on a global scale. One million downloads is a great milestone.”

We are celebrating as the one millionth download “Why We Don’t Vote: Low Voter Turnout in U.S. Presidential Elections,” the Honors Thesis Project of a student in UT’s prestigious Chancellor’s Honors Program — and a very timely topic! Trace recorded its one-millionth download on September 25, and — on that day alone — this thesis by Daniel Steven Roberts was downloaded 78 times, proving that Trace increases the value of student research, too.


Seth Jordan, Trace Administrator and Interim Manager, Digital Library Initiatives, University of Tennessee Libraries, sjordan@utk.edu, 974-4121

Holly Mercer, Associate Dean for Scholarly Communication and Research Services, University of Tennessee Libraries, hollymercer@utk.edu, 974-6899

Website Helps STEM High School Students

Librarians at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville are linking STEM students to some useful online resources.

Knoxville’s new STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) high school opened in the fall of 2011 in the former L&N Railroad station on World’s Fair Park. The L&N STEM Academy is committed to using the latest technology to prepare students for STEM careers. It’s a challenging environment in which assignments require critical thinking to solve real-world problems, and teachers of different subjects cross-plan their lessons around a single project. Each student has been given his or her own iPad2 to serve as both computer and notebook. Students even use the iPads to discover their assignments by scanning QR codes posted on classroom doors.

The costly technologies that enable the school’s innovative learning environment translate into fewer dollars for the school media center. UT librarians are stepping in to supplement the research materials available to STEM students.

A website hosted by the UT Libraries provides links to free science and technology resources. SOIL (an acronym for STEM Oriented Information Literacy) is the creation of Thura Mack, UT Libraries coordinator for outreach and community learning services; Peter Fernandez, research services librarian for Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources; and School of Information Sciences student Lisa Kellerman.

The librarians hope resources on SOIL will enhance skills the STEM students will need when they begin taking dual-credit courses at UT in their junior year. The site includes research tips, guides to citing sources, a tutorial on plagiarism and academic integrity, and directories to STEM internships (a planned capstone experience for L&N STEM Academy students).

The resources on SOIL are freely available at library.utk.edu/outreach/soil.

New Digital Collections: UT Theatre Playbills and a Student Magazine

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville Libraries announces two new digital collections. Theatre playbills and an early student publication drawn from the University Archives are the newest digital collections available on the UT Libraries’ website at www.lib.utk.edu/digitalcollections.

Playbill-1UT THEATRE PLAYBILLS. The University of Tennessee Theatre Playbills Collection showcases the history of theatre at the University of Tennessee from 1935 productions by the Faculty Players to the current season of the Clarence Brown Theatre Company, an affiliate of the exclusive League of Resident Theatres.

Ephemeral theatre groups were active on UT’s campus as early as the 1830s, but the earliest extant playbills date to productions by the Faculty Players, a club composed of faculty and spouses that brought a new level of seriousness to campus theatre in the 1930s.

UT’s theatre program began as a one-year course within the English department in 1940 and became a full-fledged department of speech and theatre in 1968. A Master of Fine Arts program was added in 1980.

The campus’ first permanent theatre space was the Carousel arena theatre, completed in 1953. The Clarence Brown Theatre opened in 1970 and was dedicated to the legendary filmmaker and UT alum whose generous gifts funded both the proscenium theatre and the professional company.

UT’s theatre program has had an illustrious history, hosting world premier productions and an international exchange of artists. Theatre enthusiasts who browse the online playbill collection will encounter productions starring renowned actors such as Mary Martin, Zoe Caldwell, John Cullum, Dame Judith Anderson, and Sir Anthony Quayle.

Mugwump-1MUGWUMP. Mugwump was a University of Tennessee student publication that ran from November 1920 until 1932. A combination of college humor and literary material, Mugwump chronicles student life and highlights student creativity through stories, essays, poetry, as well as student-drawn cartoons and artwork.

The artwork is a jaunt through 1920s fashions, from the short skirts and bobbed hair of the flapper to fellas in knickerbockers or “Oxford Bags.” Stories, cartoons and even the advertisements are a window on students’ concerns, from dating to dance crazes to doing laundry. Some cartoons also reflect the entrenched racist attitudes of the times.

Mugwump rewards even casual browsing, if only to enjoy the often humorous — and sometimes beautifully drawn — cover art.

UT Community Invited to Contribute Scholarly, Creative Work to New Electronic Publishing Service

trace-smThe University of Tennessee Libraries announces the launch of Trace: Tennessee Research and Creative Exchange (trace.tennessee.edu), a digital repository which will expand access to the university’s intellectual capital and help preserve the creative work of its scholars and researchers.

Open access services like Trace provide free online access to scholarly work and apply tags that make that work more discoverable by Internet search engines. UT faculty are invited to enhance the research impact of their work by depositing it with Trace.

Trace lets any member of the university community deposit work regardless of genre or format — pre-prints, datasets, multimedia, conference presentations, technical reports, image collections, public performances, theses and dissertations — through an easy-to-use Web interface. Trace allows depositors to affirm their own copyright ownership and, at the same time, extend nonexclusive rights for noncommercial use.

Trace operates through the Digital Commons service developed by Berkeley Electronic Press, which was founded in 1999 by academics to address specific needs and concerns of researchers. In addition to its user-friendly Web interface, Trace enables faculty to create individual Web pages highlighting their scholarship. Trace reports to authors how often their individual works are accessed. Other features facilitate the publishing of electronic journals and the hosting of conferences.

“University publishing services enhance our international collaboration and global academic networks,” said UT Knoxville Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Susan Martin. Added Brad Fenwick, UT Knoxville vice chancellor for research and engagement, “This program offers a collaborative digital space to explore new forms of scholarship and make work more discoverable.” Both the UT Office of the Provost and the Office of Research are sponsors of the institutional repository, along with the University Libraries and the UT-Oak Ridge National Laboratory Science Alliance.

Agencies that fund research are requiring broader public access to the research they support, including the datasets upon which findings are based. “Electronic publishing has profoundly affected research and teaching. Trace makes UT scholarly and creative work highly visible and easily accessible to current and future scholars,” said University Libraries Dean Barbara Dewey. “The service showcases UT’s academic quality.”

Linda Phillips, head of scholarly communication at the UT Libraries, chairs a Trace advisory group that has created a set of preliminary policies. “Campus digital publishing and preservation services are still evolving,” Phillips said. Phillips and Roger Weaver, the Trace administrator, are offering several orientation and training sessions during the academic year. Questions from individuals or departments about Trace should be directed to trace@utk.edu@utk.edu.

Graduate Student Open House, August 21


Join us Friday, August 21, 1:00 – 3:00 pm, at the Melrose entrance (2nd floor) of Hodges Library for the Graduate Student Open House.

  • Register for Interlibrary Services.
  • Meet your department’s subject librarian.
  • Bring your laptop to register for wireless access at UT.
  • Familiarize yourself with the library and its services in a relaxed atmosphere.

See you there!

New Library Homepage Goes Live August 7

homepagethumbnail-3The UT Libraries will unveil a new homepage on Friday, August 7. Online visitors will immediately notice a new look, but the changes are more than superficial. Improved search capabilities are available thanks to a new “discovery and delivery platform” that overlays the Libraries’ catalog and other online resources.

The most obvious change is the addition of the “simple search box” at the top of the homepage. Tabs on the search box offer different ways to search library resources. The new, enhanced searches for books and articles also return more useful search results. A book or article search returns both a list of hits and a list of categories (or “facets”) that can be used to quickly refine the search.

For assistance in determining the best type of search for your research needs, contact a librarian via our chat or email services (accessible from the homepage), or ask for help at the Research Assistance desk in the Commons.

All the services, resources and information available on the old website are still available. If you have difficulty finding the resources you need, please ask.

In fact, the Libraries wants your feedback on the new webpage and the upgraded search capabilities. Enhancements will be ongoing, and the Libraries wants to make those changes that best serve its users. The homepage includes a convenient link for submitting your comments.

UT establishes publishing service to showcase and preserve campus scholarship, creativity

trace-smThe University of Tennessee is launching a service that will promote and preserve the university’s scholarly and creative work in a universally accessible digital repository.

Trace, the Tennessee Research and Creative Exchange, will promote the visibility and permanence of the UT community’s research, scholarship and creative activity,” said Barbara Dewey, dean of the UT Libraries.

Trace will provide global access to UT’s scholarly and creative output. The collective excellence of our faculty and students will be highlighted with every click on the website,” Dewey said.

Trace content may include technical reports, grant proposals, digital media, campus publications, conference proceedings, extension service publications, and internal archives, as well as scholarly work published in peer-reviewed journals and books when copyright permits. Works deposited receive the same stewardship as other resources in the university’s growing digital library.

The UT Office of Research, the Science Alliance, and the Office of the Provost are cooperating with UT Libraries to sponsor the repository. The Berkeley Electronic Press Digital Commons platform will host the service for the first three years.

“The program offers a collaborative digital space for university communities to explore new forms of scholarship and make their work discoverable,” said Brad Fenwick, UT vice chancellor for research and engagement. “Our researchers and scholars will possess a substantial advantage in conducting cutting-edge research, delivering high-quality teaching, and contributing valuable services to society.”

“We are thrilled the University of Tennessee, Knoxville chose the Digital Commons platform and confident that they will build a strong library publishing program and vibrant research showcase,” says Jean-Gabriel Bankier, president of Bepress. “From engaging stakeholders to identifying sources of unique content on campus, the library has been doing everything right to ready themselves for a strong launch. UT recognizes the strategic importance of an institutional repository as a key component in the overall mission of the university.”

The university’s Science Alliance director and project partner, Jesse Poore, notes, “UT is the hub of a vibrant research community that includes Oak Ridge National Laboratory, UT System campuses and diverse institutes. Trace increases access to primary source data valuable for communication across disciplines.”

Benefits of a university digital repository include:

• Showcases the university’s research accomplishments
• Promotes the university
• Increases access to the university’s intellectual capital
• Enables collaborative research and communication among scholars
• Preserves digital resources generated at the university
• Availability of Bepress technical staff for training and assistance

More information about Trace is available from Linda Phillips (llphillips@utk.edu), professor and head of scholarly communication at UT Libraries.

Library Digitizes Union Soldier’s Civil War Diary

22feb1865The latest addition to the University of Tennessee Libraries’ digital collections provides an intimate look into the daily life of a Civil War soldier. Three journals kept by Union soldier Henry Pippitt describe life in Company G of the 104th Ohio Volunteer Infantry during the American Civil War.

The diaries are the property of the Cleo Redd Fisher Museum in Loudonville, Ohio, which graciously allowed the UT Libraries to digitize the journals and make them available online.

The Henry Pippitt collection is extremely unusual in that it covers a Civil War regiment’s entire term of service. Thus, it constitutes a history of the 104th Ohio as well as a glimpse into Henry Pippitt’s life as a soldier. Pippitt enlisted into the 104th in August of 1862 as a private and mustered out in June of 1865. During the intervening years he participated in military campaigns throughout the South. His journals describe battles, troop movements, and camp conditions. He also writes of foraging for food, his unit’s reception in towns that they pass, men wounded, and men taken prisoner.

Pippitt’s journals are no less poignant for their brief, straightforward reporting of daily events. They attest to both the horrific and the mundane aspects of war. For instance, the entry pictured here records Pippitt’s experiences on February 22, 1865 (spelling normalized for ease of reading):

“To day Colonel Jordan was appointed Provost-marshall of the City of Wilmington and the 104th to do Provost duty. We crossed Cape fear river and passed into the City. The Band struck up Yankee doodle. The Streets were crowded with citizens and drays. We went to the outskirts of town and went into barracks. There eight of our men prisoners here who starved to death & two who are just alive.”

Visit dlc.lib.utk.edu/pippitt to view facsimiles of Pippitt’s journals.

There is an interesting backstory to the inclusion of the Pippitt diaries among the UT Libraries’ digital collections. Civil War materials are one of the strengths of our Special Collections; so, when the Pippitt materials appeared for sale on eBay a few years ago, the UT Libraries eagerly purchased the journals. However, unbeknownst to our library or to the bookseller who handled the sale, the journals had been stolen from the Cleo Redd Fisher Museum in Loudonville, Ohio, the city where Henry Pippitt settled after his discharge from the Ohio Volunteer Infantry. The UT Libraries returned the purloined journals, the mortified bookseller refunded the purchase price to the UT Libraries, and the Cleo Redd Fisher Museum is once again in rightful possession of the diaries of a native son.

Students, Test Your Smarts to Win Free Gadgets!

University of Tennessee, Knoxville students can now enter a contest to win free gadgets. Students may enter the Knovel University Challenge by using the UT Libraries’ subscription to Knovel, a database of chemistry and chemical engineering textbooks, and following the instructions to play.

By answering three questions correctly, students are entered into a drawing for Nintendo Wiis, iPod Nanos, and iTunes gift cards.

The contest is open to current students of UT Knoxville. Students have until midnight on November 7, 2008 to submit answers and contact information for the contest.

The correct answers and winners of the contest will be announced and featured in K-News and on www.knovel.com. All entries and photos become Knovel Corporation’s property and will not be returned. Each participant consents to the use of his or her name and picture on the Knovel web site for informational and/or promotional purposes, without compensation.

Winners will be contacted by the Knovel Corporation via email.