Omeka for Digital Collections and Exhibits
Thursday, April 12th, 4:10-5:00pm
D-Lab, 350 Barrows Hall
Omeka is ideal for creating and displaying an online collection or exhibit composed of many digital items. If you have a bunch of digital images, scans, and files around a certain theme or project, and you would like to organize, describe, and showcase these files, Omeka may be a good fit for you. In this hands-on workshop, we will learn how to add and describe items in Omeka, the basics of the Dublin Core metadata schema, and how to create webpages with the Simple Pages plugin. Register at bit.ly/dp-berk
Upcoming Workshops in this Series 2017-2018:
- By Design: Graphics & Images Basics
- The Long Haul: Best Practices for Making Your Digital Project Last
Please see bit.ly/dp-berk for details.
UC Berkeley alumna Ruth Petersson Bancroft, founder of The Ruth Bancroft Garden in Walnut Creek and well-known expert in dry gardening, passed away at the age of 109 on Nov. 26. Her oral history, The Ruth Bancroft Garden in Walnut Creek, California: Creation in 1971 and Conservation, conducted in 1991 and 1992, is described by interviewer Suzanne B. Riess as “…the amazing chronicle of the growth of a passionate gardener, from her childhood recollections of spring wildflowers on the hills of an earlier, bucolic Berkeley, to her current triumphs, and the tribulations of stewardship of a garden more or less in the public trust.”
The daughter of first-generation Swedish immigrants, Ruth Petersson was born in Massachusetts, but moved to Berkeley, California when her father landed a professorship at UC Berkeley. Of her childhood, she said, “I spent a lot of time wandering around and also over into Wildcat Canyon, just looking at the wildflowers and I think that’s what started me in the interest of wildflowers…” Although Ruth originally studied architecture as one of the only women in the program at UC Berkeley, the Great Depression hit and so for the sake of job security, she switched her career to education. It was during her time as a teacher of home economics in Merced that she met Philip Bancroft, Jr., the grandson of Hubert Howe Bancroft, whose 60,000-volume book collection began the Bancroft Library. After they married, the couple moved onto the Bancroft Farm in the East Bay. The Bancroft family sold much of their land to the city of Walnut Creek as it expanded over the years. Later, in 1971, Philip Bancroft, Jr. gave the last 3-acre plot of walnut orchards to his wife in order to house her extensive collection of succulents.
Though The Ruth Bancroft Garden now boasts a beautiful display of water-conserving plants, the garden was not without its hardships at the beginning. Just a few months after Bancroft began her garden, a severe freeze in December killed nearly all that she had planted. Still, she persevered. “Well, I started again the next year… I figured it doesn’t happen that often, and you can’t just not replant those same things, because they might have another twenty years before they’d be killed again. So I’m just replanting. Have to start over again.” To this, Riess queried, “You didn’t think in some way you had been given a message?” Bancroft laughed and replied, “No.”
A long-time friend of Bancroft and former manager at the UC Berkeley Botanical Garden, Wayne Roderick said, “I would classify Ruth as a genuine dirt gardener. She’s out there doing things with her bare hands. She would be out in the garden by seven at the latest, and for the first hour she was weeding the path of the little spotted spurge, hand-weeding those paths until her knees would get so sore from the rocks, the gravel. That’s what I mean by a genuine dirt gardener.” In addition to Bancroft’s hands-on style of working, she also kept meticulous records as she created her garden. An invaluable addition to her oral history is the transcription of the entirety of her handwritten notes on the garden’s first year, cataloguing every trial and triumph. Riess urges in her introduction to the oral history, “Any gardener will do well to read that year of Ruth’s journal, to see the value of a journal, as well as the work involved in realizing a dream, and the necessity of being willing to weed!”
Over the years, Bancroft also had many helpers that contributed to the development of her impressive creation, such as Lester Hawkins, who created the original design of the garden, and her husband Philip. Roderick recalls, “Phil Bancroft just adored Ruth, and he wanted her to have anything she wanted. He did everything he could to help her. I don’t think Phil thought about the garden continuing, but he certainly was there to make sure she got what she wanted for the place. He was a farmer-type, but he enjoyed seeing the garden, and he was willing to get in and help.” Later, her garden would inspire fellow gardener Francis Cabot to create the Garden Conservancy, of which the Ruth Bancroft Garden became the first of many private gardens to be preserved for the public.
Still, through all of the international recognition and acclaim she received, Bancroft maintained a simple and genuine love for gardening: “You never know just what’s going to bloom when, during the summer. And a lot of the bloom just lasts a day, or possibly two days. It’s interesting to see what there is, and catch it before it’s gone.” When asked whether she had had a mission for the garden, she replied, “I just started it for the fun of it, and the enjoyment of it. I had no idea that people would be looking at it, no idea at all.“
Oral History Center Student Assistant
The UC Berkeley Library is a member of the Center for Research Libraries (CRL), a partnership of more than 200 university, college, and independent research libraries. CRL acquires and preserves newspapers, journals, government documents, archives, and other primary source materials from a global network of sources, making them available to researchers through interlibrary loan and digital delivery.
CRL’s deep and diverse holdings support research in the history of science, economics, law and government, immigration and population studies, international diplomacy, and cultural studies.
- Largest collection of circulating newspapers in North America (more than 16,000 titles with strengths in various global areas and historical U.S. ethnic titles)
- Primary legal and government resources, including foreign and U.S. state documents
- Over 800,00 foreign dissertations (mostly from European institutions) dating back to the 1800s
- Area studies materials—major microform and paper collections from Africa, Latin America, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, South Asia, and Southeast Asia
CRL functions as a branch library of extraordinary resources with user-focused services.
- Rapid turnaround of loan requests and project-length loan privileges from CRL’s five million items
- Digitized collections offering over 50 million pages scanned by request or in partnerships
- Document delivery of articles from the Linda Hall Library of Science, Engineering, and Technology
- Demand purchase of new materials in three areas of collection strength: foreign dissertations, newspapers, and microform archives
For more information on CRL collections: CRL’s online catalog (holdings are also listed in WorldCat and in some cases in OskiCat)
For more information about the CRL: please contact Liladhar R. Pendse
(Lpendse (at) library.berkeley.edu), UCB Library coordinator for the CRL.
The Library will have trial access through April 15 to the complete collection of ebooks on Cairn, an online platform for interdisciplinary journals and books published in France and Belgium. Some representative publishers include Presses Universitaires de France, Presses Universitaires de Vincennes, Presses de Science Po, Le Seuil, Tallandier, La Découverte, Karthala, De Boeck Supérieur, Picard, Kimé, and more.
Cairn.info, created in 2005 by a small group of publishers, offers the most comprehensive collection of journals available online in the French language. The project, supported by the Bibliothèque nationale de France and the Centre national du livre, makes available an increasing number of scholarly journals and now books in the various fields of the humanities and social sciences.
Feedback can be sent to cpotts [at] berkeley.edu.
One of the great joys of being an oral historian is getting to talk to people you otherwise wouldn’t have known. We have the privilege of asking people about their lives, putting their experiences in context of the larger historical landscape, posing questions that others don’t have the opportunity to ask. I had the opportunity to do just this when I interviewed Professor Susan Ervin-Tripp in 2016.
Professor Dan Slobin puts it best in the introduction he wrote for Ervin-Tripp’s oral history:
Throughout her long and productive career, Susan Ervin-Tripp has repeatedly been a path-breaker. And the paths that she helped explore have become well-traveled roads. I is remarkable to see so many innovations in one life story: psycholinguistics and sociolinguistics, embracing new directions in the study of first-language acquisition as well as bilingualism; repeated applications of new technology: computers, tape recorders, video recorders, wireless microphones; design of new methods of transcribing and documenting the many layers of speech interaction; cross-linguistic and cross-cultural research, with attention to both individual and interpersonal dimensions of language. Along with these contributions to the scientific side of her profession, Ervin-Tripp has given equal attention to the institutional and political dimensions of academia, focusing on the treatment of women and minorities. Wherever possible, she used her academic skills as a psycho- and sociolinguist to provide a scientific foundation to her advocacy.
Slobin is not the only one who values Ervin-Tripp’s many contributions. Her interview was part of our Class of ’31 series, in which faculty and staff, both current and retired, are nominated by admirers to the subject an oral history. Ervin-Tripp received numerous, passionate nominations which conveyed a resounding eagerness to document her work in academics and equity, knowing that we could all benefit from learning about her trailblazing work.
I sat down with Ervin-Tripp for our first interview in May of 2016. It was immediately clear that she was a practiced speaker, having taught for many years, with a healthy sense of humor. She was poised and articulate, prepared with her notes. Over the course of our six hours of interviews, we discussed her childhood during the Great Depression in Minneapolis, Minnesota, her undergraduate education at Vassar College, her doctoral work at the University of Michigan, and her career at UC Berkeley, which began in 1958. She detailed her work on the Southwest Project in Comparative Psycholinguistics studying the connection between language and cognitive performance, her time as a professor in the Psychology and Speech Departments at Berkeley, her early adoption of technology in her research, her participation at Stanford University’s Center for Advanced Studies in the Behavioral Sciences and with the 1985 Scientific Exchange program in France. She talked about the significant advances that she made for women’s equality on campus and the multiple efforts she made to create such change.
It was a pleasure to have interviewed a woman whose career has impacted Berkeley so greatly. There are many lessons to learn from this interview, particularly the courage and persistence it takes to create an equitable environment. Professor Susan Ervin-Tripp’s oral history is one that is rare for her generation and one that should be celebrated.
Shanna Farrell, Interviewer, Oral History Center
Online since 1997, Gallica remains one of the major digital libraries available for free on the Internet. With more than 12 million high-resolution digital objects from the collections of the Bibliothèque Nationale de France (BnF) as well as from hundreds of partner institutions, it includes books, journals, newspapers, manuscripts, maps, images, audio files, and more. The illustration above “Ça, mon enfant, c’est du pain.. [That, my child, is bread…]” by Fernand-Louis Gottlob was published in one of the first issues of the weekly satirical magazine L’Assiette au beurre (1901-1936) which is also held in print at UC Berkeley. Committed to the ever-evolving needs of its user community, Gallica’s social media outlets include Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and even a BnF app.
More than a decade ago, the Library digitized close to 350 original cultural and political posters from Cuba acquired by retired librarian Carlos Delgado through the exchange program he set up with the José Martí National Library of Cuba in 2000. All are searchable by title, keyword or publisher in the Colección de Carteles Cubanos online database and in the Online Archive of California (OAC) with another 200 slated to be added this year. The posters capture the broad range of national and international campaigns of Fidel Castro’s regime but also a unique perspective on the world through promotional art for exhibitions, performances, festivals, and conferences held on the embargoed Caribbean island nation in the last four decades of the twentieth century.
Do you need to purchase data for your research or teaching? The Library can help!
The Data Acquisition & Access Program is focused on datasets that require license or user agreements to access. Made possible through a partnership between the Library and the D-Lab, this program provides up to $100,000 per year for the purchase of data that is of use to more than one research group or department.
There will be quarterly review cycles each year, and applications are accepted on a rolling basis. The next review date will be November 1st, 2016.
All UC Berkeley faculty, students, and academic researchers (or UCB librarians on their behalf) are eligible to apply; undergraduate requests must be supported by a faculty member.
To apply for funding, fill out the Purchase Request Form and select Data Set under “Type of material.”
Examples of data sets purchased so far:
- India – National Sample Survey – Consumer Expenditure Survey Series
- India Annual Survey of Industries, 2008-2013
- Linguistic Data consortia membership
- Complete Northern California Real Estate Foreclosure
- Amadeus Historical Data (database of comparable financial and business information on Europe’s biggest 510,000 public and private companies by assets; 43 countries are covered)
(Inspired by a post on the Research IT blog)
The Royal Society of Chemistry Historical Collection covers nearly 500 years of the development and evolution of the chemical sciences. Books, journals, letters, lecture notes, pamphlets, monographs, plus minutes and publications from learned societies are included. Some highlights of the collection:
- materials on alchemy and early chemistry dating back to the early 16th century
- materials on explosives and firearms dating back to 1598
- materials formerly in the possession of the family of Sir Humphry Davy and containing items from Antoine Lavoisier, John Dalton and Justus von Liebig, among others
- backfiles of the journal Education in Chemistry