Contact: Guy Lamolinara, Public Afffairs (202) 707-9217; Tamara Swora, National Digital Library (202) 707-6293

October 8, 1996

National Digital Library Program Awards Contract for Digital Conversion

On August 6, 1996, the Library of Congress National Digital Library (NDL) Program, working with the Library's Contracts and Logistics Services, awarded to Preservation Resources the first of several major scanning contracts. This contract is for the production of digital images of selected collections from the Library's extensive holdings of 35mm microfilm.

The contract award is for one year plus four option years, during which time approximately 1 million grayscale and bitonal images are to be produced and made available by the National Digital Library Program over the Internet. The microfilm of the historical collections, which will be scanned for the NDL Program, was produced between 1950 and 1994. The first collection to be scanned under this contract will be the Presidential Papers of George Washington from the Library's Manuscript Division. Other collections to follow will be from the holdings of the Music Division and the Presidential Papers of Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln, also from the Manuscript Division. Various less extensive collections and individual titles will also be scanned.

Preservation Resources, a division of the OCLC Online Computer Library Center, is a not-for-profit organization devoted to the reformatting or conversion of library and archival materials. Originally called MAPS (Mid-Atlantic Preservation Service), the organization was established in 1985 to serve the preservation microfilming needs of five Mid-Atlantic research libraries -- Columbia University Libraries, Cornell University Library,Princeton University Library, New York State Library and the New York Public Library. It has been a division of OCLC Inc. since 1994 and is based in Bethlehem, Pa. The contract award is in full compliance with all provisions of the Federal Acquisition Regulation and the Buy American Act.

Since 1985, Preservation Resources has completed preservation microfilming projects for institutions throughout the country, filming approximately 200,000 volumes, largely for preservation projects supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities' Division of Preservation and Access.

In 1994, Preservation Resources began experimenting with digital imaging and providing scanning services in parallel with its extensive micrographic services. It undertook several research and demonstration projects: scanning issues of a 19th century newspaper from existing microfilm to produce an indexed CD-ROM of the images; a project with the New York Public Library to develop cost models and to evaluate the quality and throughput of currently available microfilm scanners for scanning retrospective microfilm;and a project to film and scan highly illustrated texts with graphics in color and continuous tone.

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PR 96-131
ISSN 0731-3527

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