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University of Louisville University Libraries


Digital Collections : University of Louisville Images

University of Louisville Images Collection

This collection contains images relating to the University of Louisville and its history. It includes the "building book," an online encyclopedia of current and historical campus structures as well as images of faculty, administrators and students and campus activities and events.

Through a partnership with Intramurals and Recreational Sports, fifty years' worth of Intramurals champions images (1962 - 2012) have been added to the collection.

The UofL Images collection includes photographs taken by a variety of staff photographers and student photojournalists. Two photographers are particularly well represented in this collection: Norris Mode and Steve Gruebbel.

Norris Mode's negatives were donated to the University Archives & Records Center in 2008. Mr. Mode was a local photographer who worked with the University to document its academic, civic, and extracurricular life in the mid-twentieth century. Many of his images were used in University alumni publications, for example. The bulk of the images included in this collection date from 1947 to 1960. Only a portion of the more than 1300 negatives were selected for inclusion in this online collection; for more information, view the full description of the contents of the Norris Mode photographs. Topics such as athletics, visiting dignitaries, University administrators, and building construction and dedications are particularly well represented.

Steve Gruebbel was a photographer for the Thoroughbred, UofL's yearbook, in 1968-1969. Mr. Gruebbel donated his negatives to the University Archives in 2010, and then volunteered to scan and describe them as well. His knowledge of the context of each photograph resulted in metadata with a far higher level of certainty and detail. Again, only 405 of the photographs in his collection of more than 1500 images were selected for the online collection. These pictures focus largely on the student experience, including athletics, pep rallies, the Fryberger Sing and other student competitions, and Greek life.

About the Building Book

The Building Book began as a set of paper-based forms that University Archives staff completed on buildings (past and present) that were part of the University of Louisville experience. Information was gathered regarding the dates of construction, remodeling, dedications, re-dedications, and so forth for buildings that were owned by UofL, used by UofL, or simply frequented by UofL students, as in the case of the Cardinal Inn, a campus hangout of days gone by. The original forms had spaces for names of architects, architectural styles, and current and past uses. This analog book was brought into the digital age in the 1990s when it served as the basis for a set of html webpages. In most cases, there were no images provided; the text stood alone.

The spring of 2008 saw a simultaneous interest on the part of the University Archives and Records Center (UARC) and University Planning, Design and Construction (UPDC) to update the building book. UARC was also interested in including this encyclopedic "work" in the University Libraries' Digital Collections. Together, these two groups decided on the metadata to be collected, and how it would be presented. While the information presented on each building mirrors very closely the original Building Book, this newest version includes information on building size. In addition, the UPDC was able to provide information on the buildings that was not available in the historical files available at the Archives.

In 2009, photographer Tom Fougerousse of the University of Louisville's Office of Communications and Marketing deposited his campus photos in UARC, and 69 of these were added to the site in early 2010.

The building names used in the image titles represent the most commonly used form; many buildings have "official" names that are not in general use. For instance, the Student Activities Center, or SAC, is more formally known as the Donald C. and Lavinia L. Swain Student Activities Center.

At the time this digital Building Book was launched, images were not available for all buildings. In some cases, this was because the buildings were still under construction; in other cases, the Archives was still in the process of locating a suitable image. The Book will continue to be updated as additional photographs become available.

Conditions of Use

The University of Louisville welcomes fair use of this website and its contents. If you wish to publish, broadcast, or publicly display these materials, please notify Archives and Special Collections. In addition, it is your responsibility to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions, which may include paying fees for commercial use. For further information about permissions, use, and ordering reproductions, see Order Reproductions, or contact Archives and Special Collections, University of Louisville.


The nearly 7,000 Intramurals and Recreational Sports champions images were removed from posters, assigned accession numbers, rehoused in acid-free enclosures, scanned, and described in 2012 by Archives & Special Collections student workers Steve Edwards, Max Baechle, and Hao Nguyen, with funding provided by Intramural and Recreational Sports, and faculty members Chad Owen, Heather Fox, Carrie Daniels, and Rachel I. Howard. Rachel I. Howard uploaded the images to CONTENTdm version 6.1.3 in December 2012 and January 2013.

Steve Gruebbel contributed his images to this collection beginning in 2010. Gruebbel scanned 35 mm negatives on an Epson Perfection 700 flatbed scanner as 600 ppi tiff images scaled to approximately 10 inches on the long side. Daniels converted the TIFFs into JPEGS of 600 pixels on the long side using IrfanView version 4.25.

Steve Gruebbel created metadata for his images with contributions from fellow alumni/ae. Emily Symonds selected images for inclusion in the collection, edited, and added to Gruebbel's metadata. Carrie Daniels also edited the metadata, which Symonds then uploaded into CONTENTdm.

Terri L. Holtze designed the HTML pages for the whole collection.

Dwayne K. Buttler, J.D., provided copyright advice for the whole collection.

Building Book

The Building Book began in the 1970s in a loose-leaf binder maintained by Tom Owen, Archivist for Local History in the University Archives and Records Center. In addition to creating and revising earlier versions of this collection, Owen became the keeper and creator of the reference files that provided documentation for much of the metadata, as well as many of the images. He also reviewed all the metadata included in this digital version, and coordinated efforts between UARC and UPDC.

Will Armstrong, Intern, played an essential role in updating the metadata, bringing the building list up to date and in accordance with the University Planning, Design and Construction's list, and identifying and scanning appropriate images for the initial launch with 300 records in August 2008. Heather Fox contributed metadata to 53 new records added to the site in January 2010 and 204 images added in July 2010.

Carrie Daniels oversaw and coordinated the work of Tom Owen, Will Armstrong, and Heather Fox. She also scanned many of the images, edited the metadata after approval by Tom Owen, and assigned subject headings. The metadata was created in accordance with the University of Louisville Digital Initiatives data dictionary (PDF). All titles were supplied by the catalogers.

Rachel I. Howard provided valuable database support and played a leading role in metadata structure discussions. She also identified and scanned images from Photographic Archives' collections for inclusion in this digital collection.

The Building Book images were scanned by Will Armstrong, Carrie Daniels, and Rachel I. Howard in June-August 2008. Prints were scanned on a Microtek ScanMaker 1000XL flatbed scanner as 600 ppi TIFF images in 24-bit color, scaled to approximately 10 inches on the long side. Slides were scanned on an Epson Expression 1680 flatbed scanner as 600 ppi TIFF images in 24-bit color, scaled to approximately 10 inches on the long side. 8 x 10 black-and-white negatives were scanned on an Epson Expression 1680 flatbed scanner as 8-bit grayscale. Black and white images were converted to grayscale by Carrie Daniels using Photoshop version CS2. Daniels converted the TIFFs into JPEGs of 600 pixels on the long side using Photoshop Elements version 2.0, and uploaded the JPEGS into CONTENTdm version 5.1.

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