Friday, December 21, 2007


This is an especially interesting and important project with potential relevance for music, theatre, history, and the social sciences.

Black Gospel Music Restoration Project (Baylor University)
This is an ongoing project that seeks to acquire, preserve and catalog rare and seldom-heard 78s, 45s and LPs dating from 1945-1970. The project's eventual goal is the creation of a digital audio archive. The site currently offers limited streaming material. Click on "browse a portion of the collection," then click on a vinyl disc thumbnail. Choose side one or side two, and then click on "access this item" from the top center of the page. The project's director, Robert Darden, was interviewed on the NPR program Fresh Air on December 20, 2007. Click here to listen to this interview and to learn more about how materials for this unique and important collection are being acquired.

Monday, December 17, 2007


A World of Ideas Lectures Archive
This site contains academic lectures in audio and video formats. The material originates on university websites and radio stations and covers a broad range of topics, including philosophy, religion, the arts, languages, and social sciences.

The Lives They Left Behind: Suitcases from a State Hospital Attic
This is a deeply poignant collection. On December 7, 2007, the New York Times reported on an exhibit of artifacts recovered from abandoned suitcases and trunks that were discovered in the attic of the Willard Psychiatric Center in Finger Lakes New York in 1995 ( A handful of the retrieved items are on display at the New York Public Library's Science, Industry and Business Library through January 31. The beautifully-designed website preserves the exhibit's poignant images, and includes detailed biographical profiles of nine Willard Patients; historical information about the institution; and discussion about social issues related to mental illness and society's response to the mentally ill and marginalized.