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Senter Digital Archive – New Images Added!

Special Collections
Item 31479006615867 coming soon to the Senter Digital Archive!

Over the past year, the Special Collections Department has been working to get even more of our digitized images online in the Senter Digital Archive. We are happy to announce that we are now able to continuing adding images at a decent pace!

In the latest batch of images, there are many images of the Merrimack River and Little River, the Floods of 1896 and 1936, and the 1937 WPA retaining wall project to manage the river along downtown Haverhill. Intermixed are many interesting photos of Haverhill’s development over time, including Industrial Era conditions and previously open space that is now “thickly settled.”

Item 31479006615446 in the Senter Digital Archive.

These themes continue in the next batch, which includes the main image in this post showing people observing the high water level from the Haverhill Bridge during the Flood of 1896. This particular image has stunning clarity and quality, as well, and is a great example of the variety of photographic processing methods and formats we have in our collections. We hope to upload this batch very soon!

Item 31479006614605-2 in the Senter Digital Archive.

Why does it take so long, you might ask? Each of the nearly 15,000 images in the digital archive have descriptive catalog records to allow for searching and browsing. Each record is created manually and linked to other images by thoughtfully assigning and matching search terms and key words. A single record can take up to an hour to create!

Thankfully, we have developed a process to upload new records in batches, then edit individual records at a quicker pace than previously possible. We have also contracted with an outside vendor to create some of the metadata for each image and save our onsite staff some time – did you know that the Senter Digital Archive is just one of 12 collections we manage in Special Collections?

More Special Collections information is always available in our corner of the HPL website:

*Please note that we have moved our evening open hours to Thursdays.