Taiwan Memory
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There are over 4 million volumes in National Central Library, including a rich range of historic documents on Taiwan, such as Taiwanese post cards from the Japanese colonial period, old photos from various places and old homes, local biographies, ancient book logs, family genealogies, rubbings, video and audio materials, and digital video files from the daily evening news since Taiwan TV News began broadcasting in 1962, all collected through a variety of channels. In order to properly preserve these historic memories of Taiwan, we have used digital technology, as well as audio records, for their storage. We hope not only to digitally collect such historic documents of Taiwan to build a system of “Taiwanese Memory,” but also to share and reuse materials by virtue of establishing a digital interpretation of information and objects. Furthermore, through using various Internet capabilities, we can expand the reading and research of Taiwanese historic documents throughout both Taiwan and the world.
Content of Features
“Taiwan Memory” contains a rich source of books and literature, historic documents, images, photos, video, and video records of news, as well as information on historic figures; among these is a variety of precious literature of historic materials in written, audio, and visual forms. After interpretation and digitalization, historic pictures and memories of Taiwan were presented and recorded in the following categories: “Books & Literature,” “Photos,” “Historic Documents,” “People & Events,” and “Visual Exhibitions.” Currently, there have been more than 400,000 metadata and more than 800,000 digital images and files in video conference enteredin the system.
Topic Introduction
Books & Literatures This system contains topic bibliographies, such as images and books with significance in Taiwan research, such as local histories, old books in Chinese or Japanese in which online search and browsing features are available for a listing of books, indexes and full-text images. Currently, topics that have been completed include topic databases: The Local Gazeteers of Taiwan since 1949, The Archives of the Presbyterian Church in Taiwan (Trials), The Catalogue of Book Publications in Taiwan 1945-1949, Selected Collections of Taiwan Study in the Japanese Colonial Period, Collections of Ancient Books in the Japanese Language in Tainan City Municipal Library, Collections of Taiwan Literature in Lukang Culture & Education Foundation, Taiwan Hakka Digital Library, Books of Taiwanese Folksong, Scripts of Shadow Play, Collections in Shadow Play, Hall of Kaohsiung County Government, and selected literature books published before 1945.
Historic Documents It also contains historic cocuments of Taiwan, particularly collected by this Library, such as the Taiwan Historic Documents database and family genealogies. Currently, we have collected more than 2,000 historic documents, a majority of which are nongovernmental instruments with inscriptions, while others contain government notices. We also have discussions from the period, the earliest deeds of wasteland reclamation given by six business holders to the public in 1732 (the 10th Year of Yungcheng), which were the inscriptions that established the Anli communities in Taizhung and the Han people as business holders, while the most recent instruments were private inscriptions established in Japan’s colonial period from the 18th to 20th centuries. This information can be references for research on Taiwan’s social culture in the 18th and 19th centuries. So far, the Taiwan Historic Documents database has been completed so that users can browse digital files and the introductions of ancient books by category and online searches. In addition, we entered into a cooperative agreement with the world famous family genealogy collection center, GSU, in 2004. We also acquired copies of materials in microfilm collected from civil society in Taiwan in 1970—a total of more than 794 microfilms and more than 9,000 records of family genealogy were included. We are currently digitizing and arranging them into files every year to expand the Taiwanese Family Genealogy database for users to browse their family genealogy through categories of genealogy, regions, and surnames.
Photos Photographic images are one of the most common and important media to retain memory of people. We show the social life of Taiwan and historic images from its development in the 19th century by digitizing, analyzing, and depicting the metadata of collections of treasured images originating from more than 4,000 postal cards in the Japanese colonial period. Currently, 5 topics have been completed, including: Taiwan Photos of 19th Century, Photo Album of Taiwan in the Japanese Colonial Period, The Memory of Taipei City, Elementary School Yearbooks of the Japanese Colonial Period, and Liberty Lottery issued from 1950-1987.
People and Events The historic development of Taiwan is presented through Milestones in written form and video news in various multimedia forms. Among these, sources of milestone filing originated from big events depicted in every local gazetteer, which mention the records of users’ browsing and searching relevant events from different regions, dates, and content. Video news materials have recorded the contents of evening news on TTV for the past 40 years. Currently, more than 300,000 pieces of news have been abstracted and about 18,000 hours of digital files have been made, more than 10T total in collected digital video files. These news videos were authorized for public access in low resolution. 56kbps was used for public information, which allowed us to provide the public with free browsing and searches via the Internet; another part of the video files are in higher resolutions, with 250kbps available within the library’s network. As for the MPG2 files, they will be restored digitally in this library instead of public transfer via a network. The news files mentioned above are available for people to use on VOD and our website. For the profile of figures, we collected basic information and the biographies of almost 2,000 significant Taiwanese figures from the Ming and Qin dynasties and the Japanese colonial period.
Visual Exhibition We provide in-depth introductions to a wide range of digitalized collections in this system through special exhibitions, which include, “Records of Taipei Prosperity,” “Images of Taiwan: Exhibition of Select Taiwan Literature Collections,” “Exhibition of Select Taiwan Historical Documents in National Central Library,” “Figure of Professor Robert Schloz (Hsiaozi),” “Exhibition of Photographic Images of Taiwan in the 19th Century,” “The Story of Taiwan Stele,” “Exhibition of Taiwan Literature Magazines,” “The Story of Liberty Lottery from 1950-1987,” “Reappearance of Taiwan in the Japanese Colonial Period,” “Drawings of Keelung City and Seaside—Rare Sketches of Geography,” “Memories in Ink: Calligraphy and Painting of Early Taiwan Gentry,” “Faces of Old Buildings in Taipei City,” “Paintings of Contemporary Artists in National Central Library,” “Brilliance of the Cities,” and so on.
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