Leiden University Libraries donates more than 3000 images to Wikimedia

Leiden University Libraries (UBL) has donated over 3000 historic photographs and prints 89895on the Dutch East Indies, China, Japan, Singapore and Suriname to Wikimedia Commons, the image database of Wikipedia. The images are part the Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies (KITLV) collection, which is conserved by the UBL. The upload of the images was done by Wikipedian Hans Muller.

Extensive collection
Besides images from the Dutch East Indies, the donation also includes pictures from China, Japan, Singapore and Suriname. Material such as watercolors depicting various Surinamese populations created by Father Borret, photos of nineteenth century Japan by pioneer photographer Felice Beato and photographs made by the famous photographic studio Lambert & Co. in Singapore.

50186Public domain
The pictures were already available through the UBL and KITLV, but with the donation to Wikimedia the historical material is now also online in the public domain. This means that everyone is allowed to use the pictures for free. The user can also improve the descriptions and make additions. One year ago, 2400 Asian historical photographs were added by UBL to Wikimedia.

Consult Wikimedia
The donated images are available through Wikimedia Commons. The search can be done in Dutch as well English. It’s also possible to search on KITLV, preferably followed by a geographical location, name of photographer or subject.


50H3, 15-04-2008, 14:43,  8C, 8000x6418 (0+2368), 100%, AMS_REP_6723,  1/80 s, R25.8, G4.8, B17.1

Leiden University Libraries joins The LTI Korea Library as Hub member

o5jywokbp5uh6n7u23ds_400x400As of June 2016, Leiden University Libraries has become an official Hub Library Member of the Literature Translation Institute of Korea Library.

The LTI Korea Library began in 2001 as a reference room and in 2007 was opened as a library specialized on translation. The Library holds translations of Korean literary and cultural materials in 33 languages, offers information on Korean authors and activities on Korean literature overseas, and has launched an E-library with the Korean Literature Multilingual Archive online in 2015.

The overseas Hub Library Members Program was implemented in 2012, and has since then seen its ranks increase up to 56 member institutions on 30 countries as of this year.

Leiden University Libraries has become an official member of 2016 alongside the Harvard-Yenching Library, Duke University Libraries and the University of Washington Library. On the 26th of May the Library has received its first donation of 50 items, consisting of Korean literature translated to Dutch and English, and DVD material on Korean literature and culture.

Billboard Building The Asian Library

Picture2The construction of the Asian Library on top of the University Library has begun. To inform the public we have placed an Asian Library billboard on the roof. For our visitors, we have also created a special Asian Library information stand in the main hall of the library. Here you will find beautiful artist’s impressions of the Asian Library’s design, an iPad with all kinds of information on the library and the build, and a display case with a model of the Asian Library.


First collections moved to Van Steenis storage facility

The first collections of periodicals, newspapers and dissertations have been moved from the University IMG_7505Library to the new remote storage facility in the Van Steenis Building. In this building 38 km of additional shelves are available. The relocation lasts from March to May. During this period it may occur that requested material is not available up to one week.



The crowd helps unlocking historical maps of Dutch East Indies

Leiden University Libraries (UBL) has started the project Maps in the Crowd. Nearly 7,000 digitized maps Maps in the Crowdof the Dutch East Indies will be unlocked with help from visitors, students and others who are interested. The maps originate from the collections of the Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies (KITLV), whose archives and library collections are managed by the UBL since 2014. The project started on the 12th of February and will continue until December 2016. With participation of the public we hope to improve the accessibility of digital map data for teaching and research.

A special application has been developed to help the participants connect the digitalized historical maps, through the process of georeferencing, to a modern topographical map in Google Maps. It is quite straightforward: the historical map and its modern counterpart can be connected by designating five or more corresponding control points. The georeferenced map will then be shown as an overlay in Google Maps. Everyone who is interested is welcome to join our project. More information is available on the blog Maps in the Crowd.

KITLV-map collectionD_E_23_1
KITLV’s map collection includes around 16,000 map sheets and nearly 500 atlases from the 19th and 20th century. Comprising both colonial and modern material, this collection focuses on maps of modern day Indonesia, Surinam, the Netherlands Antilles and South-East Asia. The collection consists of manuscript material brought together by scientists, missionaries, soldiers, who mapped unknown territory. The collection also contains map sheets of several map series, including late 19th century residential maps from Java, topographical series from the Topographisch Bureau in Batavia, town plans, and a relatively small amount of thematic maps and atlases.



Remote storage facility opened in the Van Steenis Building

On February 1st, Leiden University Libraries, opened its remote storage facility adding 38 km of additional shelves for books. IMG_6745With this major new facility, Leiden University Libraries has finished the 2nd phase of its Asian Library programme. In March, the library will start moving collections from the University Library closed stacks to the new remote storage facility. By doing this, it will free up space at the University Library itself to accommodate the growing Asian collections.

IMG_6722Furthermore, new offices were opened in the Van Steenis Building to house the library’s staff dealing with the acquisition and cataloging of library materials.  The move of part of the back office staff from the University Library building to these new spacious offices has freed up considerable space at the University Library that will be used to  house the Centre for Digital Scholarship.

Kern collection renumbered and moved to the Open Stacks

The South Asian collection (Kern collection) is being renumbered and will be moved from the Closed Stacks to the Open Stacks at IMG_6923the University Library. This is expected to last four months. During this period the Kern collection will be available. Repositioning of the Open Stacks will take place daily. This may cause some inconvenience. During 2016 more Asian collections will be moved into the Open Stacks.



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