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University of Louisville University Libraries


About the University of Louisville Digital Collections

The University of Louisville Digital Collections is a growing resource which includes rare and unique images, documents, and oral histories from our archives, special collections, and other campus units.

Collections are selected for this website by their curators and evaluated by site administrators for their access, preservation, and other needs or opportunities enhanced or presented by the creation of digital surrogates and standardized information about them.

Conditions of Use

As part of its educational mission, the University of Louisville provides online access to digital versions of selected materials from its collections for educational and research purposes. We have attempted to identify the copyright status for these materials, but in some cases copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine. Please contact us if you have additional information regarding the rights or rights holders of the materials on this website.

"Original works of authorship" including literary, dramatic, artistic, musical, and certain other intellectual works may be protected by United States Copyright Law (Title 17, United States Code); potential users must obtain permission from the copyright holder.

The doctrine of fair use allows limited use of copyrighted material without permission from the copyright holder. Fair use includes comment, criticism, teaching, and scholarship. The University of Louisville welcomes fair use of this website and its contents.

If you wish to publish, broadcast, or publicly display these materials, it is your responsibility to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions.

Technical Information


Images are scanned in-house as uncompressed PC TIFF (Tagged Image File Format) files in 24-bit RGB Color or 8-bit Grayscale, using either a flatbed or overhead scanner, depending on the size and condition of the originals. The typical resolution of our archival master files is 600 ppi, with a spatial resolution large enough to allow for the creation of 8x10 prints directly from the TIFFs.

For online presentation, the TIFFs are converted to compressed JPEG (Joint Photographic Experts Group) or JPEG2000 files via a batch process using Adobe Photoshop, IrfanView, or CONTENTdm Digital Collection Management Software. They are resized to a spatial resolution of 600 pixels in the vertical dimension, with proportional adjustment to the horizontal dimension, to allow for maximum viewing on standard-size computer monitors. Some images may include a band identifying the owning repository. The bands are created when uploading images using the CONTENTdm Project Client.

More specific information about the equipment and procedures used for the scanning of a particular image collection may be included in the About this Collection documentation associated with each collection.

CONTENTdm Software

The CONTENTdm Digital Collection Management Software Suite by DiMeMa, Inc., now licensed via OCLC, has been used to upload the digital files, apply metadata to them, and create search and browse functionality for this site.

The University of Louisville Libraries’ CONTENTdm license was made possible by a 2005 Library Automation subgrant from the Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives.


The website design has been customized for the University of Louisville by Terri Holtze, Web Services Librarian, using HTML and CONTENTdm’s PHP code.


Metadata, which provides information that assists search and discovery, accompanies each digital item. The image below provides an example of a metadata record from the University of Louisville Digital Collections.

screenshot of an item record showing the metadata fields, including fields for title, description, subject, location, original date, object type, source, collection, digital publisher, format, and image number.

CONTENTdm software provides a flexible metadata template based on the Dublin Core Metadata Element Set, which is customizable for each collection.

All collections use controlled vocabulary from Library of Congress Thesaurus for Graphic Materials and Library of Congress Subject Headings and Name Authorities, and adhere to local standards developed for the University of Louisville Libraries Digital Collections. The current version of our data dictionary is provided here.

We have made every effort to be thorough and accurate in our cataloging of these images. Please contact the Digital Publisher listed in the metadata if you have additional information or corrections.


The University of Louisville Libraries Digital Initiatives helps further the Libraries and University's missions by making unique collection materials and scholarship available electronically for use by students, faculty and staff, educators, and the wider community.

A number of individuals have dedicated their time and talents to fulfill this mission in the creation of this resource. Those who have made significant contributions to a particular digital collection are acknowledged in the documentation of that collection. Others have made broader contributions to the design and implementation of this site and to collection selection and cataloging procedures.

Since 2006, a group of curators, librarians, and technical specialists has met on a regular basis to plan and troubleshoot all aspects of the software and website. That group has included:

Select the collections to add or remove from your search