“Kaliszanin” – digital collection of a XIX-century periodical on Researcher’s Desk

June 29, 2023

On June 22,  Adam Asnyk Municipal Public Library in Kalisz hosted celebration of an event which was important to the community of museologists and  librarians in Kalisz – acquisition and digitization of the 19th century periodical “Kaliszanin”. The journal is a valuable source of knowledge about the XIX century city for historians, bibliologists and genealogists.

Exhibition in the Municipal Public Library in Kalisz

Purchase of ‘Kaliszanin. Newspaper of the City of Kalisz and its Surroundings” issues from the Russian National Library in St. Petersburg and its processing was carried out by a team from the Faculty of Polish and Classical Philology at the Adam Mickiewicz University. A complete set of issues published in the Russian annexation between 1870 and 1892, includes 2288 items, each 4  pages long on the average, which gives a total of approximately 9152 image files with digitally reproduced pages measuring ca. 30 x 43 cm.  Digital reprints of the newspaper are already available in the Wielkopolska Digital Library.

The collection will be further processed using methods and tools developed for the study of historical  texts within the framework of the so-called Researcher’s Desk. It is a comprehensive system for the analysis of linguistic and literary sources. Processing includes, among others, so-called OCR, i.e. acquiring a textual contents of the individual issues of the periodical, text annotation using linguistic analysis tools, semantic analysis and binding of the identified concepts in consolidated description systems (dictionaries, thesauri, ontologies). Researcher’s Desk  is a part of Dariah.lab infrastructure.

Prof. Jerzy Borowczyk’s presentation

The ceremony, organized at the Municipal Public Library in Kalisz by its director Robert Kuciński, provided an opportunity for the participants to learn about the role regional press played in the 19th century from a presentation delivered by professor Jerzy Borowczyk . Professor Bogdan Hojdis presented the history of of the “Kaliszanin” collection acquisition from the Russian National Library in St. Petersburg, and Adam Cankudis from UAM introduced the participants to the technical issues of the acquisition and processing of the collection, carried out as part of the work on Researcher’s Desk.  It was also an opportunity to present the DARIAH-PL project and the Dariah.lab infrastructure.  

Acquiring, developing and providing access to “Kaliszanin” periodical is an example of an endeavour made possible by tools and services available in Dariah.lab.

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