EMC Helps Preserve and Open Access to Worl' Historical and Cultural Artifacts
Grants Extended to Ernest Hemingwa' Finca Vigía Foundation and Community Organizations Globally to Digitize and Preserve Thousands of Priceless, Irreplaceable Artifacts
As part of the longstanding EMC Information Heritage Initiative, EMC Corporation (NYSE:EMC) today announced a donation to the Finca Vigía Foundation and a series of grants spread across community organizations in China, India, South Africa, Poland, Canada and the United States to protect and improve access to some of the world's historical and cultural artifacts.
Formalized in 2007, the EMC Information Heritage Initiative advances the preservation of humanity's information heritage and makes historical documents and cultural artifacts readily accessible via the Internet for research and education purposes. Over the last decade, EMC has donated more than $20 million to support numerous information heritage preservation projects for organizations, such as Yad Vashem and the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum. EMC's latest Information Heritage Initiative partnership will provide equipment and technical support needed to help restore, preserve and archive Ernest Hemingway's irreplaceable books, artwork, letters, photographs, scrapbooks, documents and manuscripts from Finca Vigía, his home near Havana, Cuba.
"Ernest Hemingway is an iconic global figure," said Bill Teuber, EMC’s Vice Chairman. "As one of the world's leading technology companies, we strive to help preserve the world's heritage for posterity. And, we are honored to support the restoration and preservation of Hemingway's documents, photos and literature at Finca Vigía, as well as to help offer the world an intimate glimpse into the life of one the 20th century's preeminent authors."
Finca Vigía, Hemingway's principal home from 1940 to 1960, has been operated by Cuba's Consejo Nacional de Patrimonio (CNPC) since the author's death in 1961. With the assistance of the EMC Information Heritage Initiative, the Finca Vigía Foundation and specialists in Cuba will continue to restore and conserve thousands of Hemingway's literary and cultural artifacts. The conserved originals will remain in Cuba. Digital copies will be hosted at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston, Mass. An encrypted backup copy of all the information will be stored in an EMC cloud for disaster recovery purposes.
"Finca Vigía is a missing piece to the puzzle," said Sandra Spanier, Penn State Professor of English and General Editor of the Hemingway Letters Project, which is preparing more than a dozen volumes of Hemingway's letters for publication by Cambridge University Press. "Ernest Hemingway's personal library, filled with marginalia reflecting his tastes, opinions, literary inspirations, activities, and everyday concerns, affords fresh insight into his creative processes and opens the door to a new frontier of Hemingway studies."
To further its Information Heritage Initiative, EMC also announced the seven organizations receiving EMC Heritage Trust Project grants totaling approximately $100,000. The third-annual award recipients were chosen from 110 applicants based on factors including the potential size of the audience that would benefit from access to this information, the at-risk status of the information, and how beneficial the EMC's grant would be for the overall success of the project.
"Each and every day, organizations around the globe are trying to digitize and preserve cultural and community artifacts for future generations," said Teuber. "This year's EMC Heritage Trust Project grant recipients share our passion and commitment to capturing their local information heritage and, through these grants, will be better able to share this information with communities around the world."
This year's seven EMC Heritage Trust Project grant recipients include:
- Guizhou University, College of the Humanities
Established in 1902, Guizhou University is the oldest and largest university in China's Guizhou Province. The University's Hmong Humanities Group and the Wendou Hmong will use the EMC Heritage Trust Project grant to digitally photograph at least 1,000 of the most endangered manuscripts to preserve, protect and create a database system to make a highly valuable collection of 300-year-old agroforestry contracts accessible to the public.
- Karveer Nagar Vachan Mandir
The Karveer Nagar Vachan Mandir, the largest public library in western part of Maharashtra, India, dating back 160 years, is an educational, cultural and social center with an extensive collection of rare books and manuscripts. The library will use EMC's Heritage Trust Project grant to purchase scanning equipment to digitize and catalog a very rare manuscript and book collection dating back from 16th century up to the year 1900 and create a database to make it available to the public on the library's website.
- WIMSA Digital Library and Equitable Access Project
The Working Group of Indigenous Minorities in Southern Africa (WIMSA) is a regional nongovernmental advocacy, human rights, heritage and networking organization formed in 1996 and governed by the San peoples of Namibia, Botswana, South Africa and Angola. WIMSA will use the EMC Heritage Trust Project grant to establish a digital library and provide a secure and accessible archive of San history to serve as a cultural center for future generations of San to learn about traditional knowledge, customs, and history.
- History Meeting House
The History Meeting House in Warsaw has recorded and features thousands of oral histories and individual testimonies offering insights into the 20th century history of Poland and Eastern Europe. The interviews describe many aspects of tragic history spanning pre-war times, World War II, the German and Soviet occupation of Poland, and the years of communist government in Poland and Eastern and Central Europe. The EMC Heritage Trust Project grant will fund the digitization of some 700 hours of interviews now on tape and provide for the preparation of excerpts and photographs which accompany the interviews on the archive website.
- ARCHEION: Ontario's Archival Information Network
ARCHEION, an online catalog of descriptions of cultural heritage records located in archives, libraries, historical societies and museums across Ontario, offers Ontario's heritage institutions a means of establishing an online presence while offering online users free access to information about Ontario's rich and diverse archival resources—including diaries, personal accounts, maps, films, photographs, administrative and genealogical records. The EMC Heritage Trust project grant will help ARCHEION upgrade its archival system and train members how to leverage the new software, access digitization equipment, and take advantage of the social networking possibilities of Web 2.0 innovations.
- University of Victoria, Faculty of Education, and Lower Vancouver Island Retired Teachers Association
Since 2005, the Faculty of Education at the University of Victoria has been working in partnership with the Lower Vancouver Island Retired Teachers Association to create an online collection of artifacts dating back to the mid-1800s called the Education Heritage Museum. The project has collected, cataloged and made public invaluable classroom artifacts, texts, images and audio files donated by retired teachers in a searchable database. The EMC Heritage Trust Project grant will be used to scan or photograph approximately 3,000 remaining items to upload to the website. The digitization of these materials has the potential to expand the general public's understanding of Vancouver's schooling heritage, to preserve aspects of its social history and to improve research and teaching.
- St. John Fisher College
Dr. George W. Goler, a pioneering public health physician who served as city health officer in Rochester, N.Y., from 1896-1932, was an early and tireless advocate of preventive medicine, improved the living conditions of the working poor, and drew attention to the ethical debate about community responsibility for what we now call public health. Although his notes, correspondence, and reports have been cited as a historically important collection by the National Library of Medicine/NIH, the papers remain non-circulating in 72 cardboard boxes at the Rochester Public Library. St. John Fisher College will use the EMC Heritage Trust Project grant to digitize these invaluable resources for exploring medical ethics, narratives of health and wellness, gender and race politics, and the philosophy of medicine in the early twentieth century. The digital images will be hosted on a server at the Rochester Public Library and mirrored to St. John Fisher College.
The EMC Heritage Trust Project will begin accepting nominations for next year's awards on September 1, 2010. For more information on the EMC Heritage Trust Project grant recipients, please visit www.emc.com/heritage_trust.
For more information about EMC and EMC World, please visit www.emc.com/emcworldnewsroom.
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