Here at the Digitization Centre we are fascinated and excited by the vast amount of primary-source material that our digitization work exposes us to.  Whether a document of historic significance, a beautiful illustration, or even a particularly fine typeface, we are frequently amazed by the materials we’re working to share with the world.  So much so, that not only will we crowd around to ogle a particularly interesting specimen, but we’ve started decorating our workplace with copies of some of our favorites.  But why stop there?  Surely, we can’t be the only ones geeky enough to appreciate such “gems” in our collections, and so we’ve decided to share them here with you.  Below you will find some of our favorites, hand-picked by staff from both existing and upcoming collections.  We hope you enjoy them as much as we do!  

TIP: To view full resolution versions of the images on any size screen, click to view in Open Collections.


Building Digital Collections in support of Teaching & Learning

Posted on August 25, 2022 by Kin Man Leung
~~~ The UBC Library Digitization Centre embraces new technologies, methods of access, workflows and preservation strategies while building sustainable digital collections to support and enrich the educational, cultural and economic endeavors of the University, the people of British Columbia and communities beyond. ~~~ In support of the University’s teaching and learning, the Digitization Centre works […]


Exploring Open Collections: Kamishibai Propaganda Plays

Posted on August 18, 2022 by Kin Man Leung
The Kamishibai Propaganda Plays are an extremely rare collection of World War II-era propaganda plays from Japan. This digital collection contains 52 Kamishibai plays created between 1938 and 1945, from a private collection of Professor Sharalyn Orbaugh of the UBC Department of Asian Studies. Produced by quasi-governmental organizations and publishers in support of Japanese government […]


Subject Headings in the Rainbow Ranche Collection

Posted on August 11, 2022 by Kin Man Leung
We partnered with the Lake Country Museum and Archives to digitize the Rainbow Ranche Collection. It consists of over 1,300 items which include correspondence and financial ledgers, documenting the operation of fruit ranches managed by onsite partner James Goldie in the Okanagan, as well as diary entries and clippings of newspaper articles. To gain a […]


Exploring Vanished Buildings on UBC Vancouver Campus

Posted on August 4, 2022 by Kin Man Leung
Since UBC moved to Point Grey in 1925, the University has worked on campus planning. While many new buildings have been constructed, several campus facilities have been demolished, renovated, or absorbed into other buildings for various reasons; for example, to make room for future development and providing better services. If you are interested in discovering […]


Correspondence in Yip Sang Collection

Posted on July 28, 2022 by Kin Man Leung
We partnered with the City of Vancouver Archives to digitize over 630 items for Yip Sang Collection. The majority of the collection items are personal and business correspondence for Yip Sang, his family and the Wing Sang Company in the early 20th century. They were donated to the City of Vancouver Archives by Mr. Hoy […]


University Players Club production of "Sweet Lavender, 1921-01-01

UBC Theatre Programmes

Posted on July 21, 2022 by Kin Man Leung
UBC Publications, one of our featured collections, consists of scanned copies of newspapers and other periodicals published at the University of British Columbia. This digital collection contains 22 publications, for example,  the Alumni Association’s Alumni Chronicle, the student newspaper The Ubyssey, the University’s official news publication UBC Reports, and the UBC Science Undergraduate Association’s The 432. In this blog […]


Boykott, 1935 – 1939

Our First Digital Collection

Posted on July 14, 2022 by Kin Man Leung
Roughly 11 years ago, we worked in collaboration with UBC Library Rare Books and Special Collections (RBSC) to build our first digital collection – German Consulate Fonds. Although we are uncertain of the chain of custody which resulted in the acquisition of these German Consulates records, existing documentation shows that the UBC University Librarian William […]


Tōto Shitaya ezu. [Copy 1], 1857; 安政 (Ansei) 4

Tokyo maps of Edo Period

Posted on July 7, 2022 by Kin Man Leung
The Japanese Maps of the Tokugawa Era, one of the world’s largest collections of maps and guidebooks of the Japanese Tokugawa period (ca. 1600-1868), focuses on privately published and travel-related maps and guides. This unique collection has over 666,000 item views and around 18,000 item downloads, mainly from China and the U.S. In this post, […]


[Storm the Wall], [between 1980 and 1989]

Exploring Open Collections: Alma Mater Society Image Collection: Part II

Posted on June 30, 2022 by Kin Man Leung
If you are a UBC student or alum, there is something you would not want to miss: the Alma Mater Society Image Collection. This two-part series will explore the historical photographs from the Alma Mater Society of the University of British Columbia Vancouver. You can view Part I here. Included in this collection, developed and […]


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Exploring Open Collections: Alma Mater Society Image Collection: Part I

Posted on June 23, 2022 by Kin Man Leung
If you are a UBC student or alum, there’s something you won’t want to miss: the Alma Mater Society Image Collection. This two-part series will explore the historical photographs from the Alma Mater Society of the University of British Columbia Vancouver. Included in this collection, developed and maintained by the Alma Mater Society (or AMS, […]


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