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 enlarge and then right-click and select “open image in new tab.”

Japanese Card Games

Posted on March 14, 2018 @9:35 am by Matthew Murray
Later this year we’re starting a project in partnership with the UBC Asian Library and the UBC Department of Asian Studies to digitize some cool old Japanese game cards! (Ise monogatari utakaruta, from UBC Rare Books & Special Collections) Karuta カルタ, is a borrowed Japanese term (from the Portugese carta) that refers to playing cards. Karuta became popular in […]

Remembering the Empress

Posted on March 14, 2018 @9:35 am by Laura Ferris
Today marks the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Empress of Ireland, one of the worst naval disasters in Canadian history. The Empress of Ireland, along with the Empress of Britain, was one of the first steamships that the Canadian Pacific Railway Company launched for its trans-Atlantic route in the early 1900s. Unfortunately, the […]

Map from the 1983 series showing in part the area occupied by the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre (our home!).

New Release! Greater Vancouver Regional District Planning Department Land Use Maps

Posted on March 14, 2018 @9:35 am by Rob
We have now completed the digitization, metadata creation and uploading of the Greater Vancouver Regional District Planning Department Land Use Maps collection. Go have a look!

The Discoverer and other book destruction/digitization techniques

Posted on March 14, 2018 @9:36 am by Matthew Murray
While we frequently post on this blog about the collections we’re digitizing (or about to digitize) we rarely talk about the various processes of digitizing that we use. To bring more light to our techniques I thought I’d show you a couple of the methods we use for getting books ready to digitize. Last month […]

We’ve joined The Flickr Commons

Posted on March 14, 2018 @9:36 am by Matthew Murray
We’re very pleased to announce that we’ve successfully joined The Commons on Flickr! You can check out the announcement on their blog. The Commons is a group of libraries, museums, and other institutions from around the world who have placed all or parts of their digital image collections on Flickr. While joining this group is exciting […]

Uno Langmann Collection

Posted on March 14, 2018 @9:37 am by Matthew Murray
You may have recently heard that Uno Langmann, a well known local art dealer, donated more than 18,000 photographs, apparently worth $1.2 million, to UBC! The photos stretch back to the 1850s and go all the way up to the 1970s. While we probably won’t be able to digitize all of the photos (due to copyright […]

Epigraphic Squeezes

Posted on March 14, 2018 @9:37 am by Matthew Murray
If you’ve never heard of epigraphic squeezes I wouldn’t be surprised as they’re not commonly known, they don’t even have a Wikipedia entry! Epigraphic squeezes are created when a soft, wet material, such as paper or plaster, is pressed into inscriptions made in stone. When the material dries it is removed and becomes a mirrored 3D version […]

Namazu-e Prints

Posted on March 14, 2018 @9:37 am by Matthew Murray
Hidden within some of our collections you can find content which you might not expect to see! A great example of this can be found in our collection of Japanese Maps of the Tokugawa Era which features a sub-collection of disaster prints, made up of several dozen prints which describe disasters that occurred in Japan. While some of […]

This will be a TRIUMF

Posted on March 14, 2018 @9:38 am by Matthew Murray
Our newest digitization project is being done in collaboration with TRIUMF, the Canadian laboratory for particle and nuclear physics located on UBC campus. We will be digitizing various reports and other documents dating back to the development and creation of the lab in the 1960s. Amongst all the text and equations in the reports there […]

What’s for Dinner? Historical Menus!

Posted on March 14, 2018 @9:38 am by Matthew Murray
The digital Chung Collection features a lot of really fascinating material, but unfortunately the collection is so large we haven’t finished making everything in it available online. If you’re interested in any of the material in the Chung Collection (Early BC History, Immigration and Settlement, and the Canada Pacific Railway) you should try to make time to […]

a place of mind, The University of British Columbia

UBC Library



Emergency Procedures | Accessibility | Contact UBC  | © Copyright The University of British Columbia