About the Kentuckiana Digital Library


The Kentuckiana Digital Library is built to enhance scholarship, research and lifelong learning through the establishment of access to shared digital archival collections in the state of Kentucky. It also provides guidance and instruction for Kentucky libraries, archives, historical societies and museums on applying appropriate technologies used in the production of digital library resources.


A Digital Library is an organized collection of selected digital resources created to support scholarship, research and teaching. Through the use of appropriate technological standards, a Digital Library is created to facilitate persistent access to and resource discovery of selected digital resources.


The Kentucky Virtual Library was first conceived by the State-Assisted Academic Library Council of Kentucky (SAALCK); comprised of heads of the eight state-assisted university libraries. SAALCK's vision included the provision of general access to the wealth of special collections materials held by their academic libraries, which had been previously limited to visitors to their campuses. With the 1997 Postsecondary Education Improvement Act, under the leadership of Governor Paul Patton's administration and the Council on Postsecondary Education (CPE), funding for the digital library opened the doors to wider participation by a variety of libraries across the state, including public and special libraries. The KYVL is seeking collaboration with privately funded institutions as well. Prior to the KYVL funding, the planning committee successfully won federal funding from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) to assist its planning of implementation.

Kentuckiana Digital Library Selection Focus
Collections and subsets of collections selected will have a strong Kentucky orientation as well as broad appeal on geographic, content and study levels. The materials will be unique or not widely available. Collections will be proposed by archivists at the repositories based on their evaluation of the materials' appeal and appropriateness.

Central Site Management
The University of Kentucky was selected by KYVL to manage the ongoing technological infrastructure for the Kentuckiana Digital Library. In this role, UK manages the systems infrastructure for the digital library, creates and conducts training modules on digital library technology and performs digital conversion of selected archival material from around the state.


SGML/XML Database
The Archival Finding Aids Collection and the Full-Text Archive are managed by the DLXS SGML/XML database licensed by the University of Michigan. All resources included in the SGML/XML Database can be browsed and searched via full-text.

Digital Archival Objects
The actual digitized objects selected from archival collections. Can include image based material such as photographs and sound files. These items are linked to through the Archival Finding Aids Collection.

Digital Library Server
Our digital library server runs on redhat LINUX.


In our efforts to move from vision to reality, we researched the available literature and reviewed established national digital library initiatives as well as respected technological standards. Expert consultants for four separate aspects of the project were also contracted. These expert consultants reviewed our initial implementation plan, provided on-site presentation and discussion sessions and continue to offer support through correspondence as our project has developed beyond the initial planning phase.

Peter Hirtle, Co-Director of the Cornell Institute for Digital Collections, Cornell University. Peter Hirtle consulted with our project on risk assessment in relation to copyright for digital archives.

Stephen Miller, Digital Encoding Archivist at Duke University's Digital Scriptorium. Stephen Miller provided us with invaluable assistance in our statewide implementation of the Encoded Archival Description standard for creating digital archival finding aids.

David Seaman, Director of the University of Virginia E-Text Center. David Seaman provided expert assistance in the establishment of our standards for digital scanning and imaging. David also assisted with our selection of an appropriate digital camera for the Central site and the production of RFP documents for outsourcing digital conversion of archival material.

Roy Tennant, eScholarship Web & Services Designer for the California Digital Library. Roy Tennant assisted with overall digital library structure and the establishment of our metadata guidelines.

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Copyright & Use Statement
Copyright 1999-2009 Kentucky Virtual Library