The UW-Milwaukee library is working to digitize all of the UWM Post print issues from 1956-2012. The Archives Department recognizes the Post as a resource to the community, and is working to bring it back in a more accessible way.
Librarians estimate the collection will contain about 43,000 pages once completed. Digitization of the issues is outsourced to Creekside Digital, where they scan all of the newspaper’s pages. The scans are then sent back to the library and are organized into issues and volumes. Keywords are also added to make searching for a specific article easier after digitization.
Michael Doylen, the coordinator between UWM and Creekside, says that anytime something is digital, it will get a lot more views simply because it is more accessible.
The Archives decided to digitize the UWM Post a couple of years ago. So far, only the first volume (1956-1957) has been uploaded, but the next upload will include volumes two through 15. They aim to have all of the UWM Post issues digitized by 2016, which is the Post’s 60th anniversary.
The Archives wants to promote campus history because it is getting longer every year. This year is an especially important year in history — the 50th anniversary of the Panther mascot. Before then, UWM’s mascot was a cardinal and the school colors were red and white. This year is also the 50th anniversary of the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies and the Helen Bader School of Social Welfare and the 30th annual Milwaukee LGBT Film/Video Festival. These high points have sparked the interest regarding the history of the campus, academic programs, and student life. The UWM Post gives a great description of how these things have changed over the years.
In 1956, UWM was formed from the merging of the Wisconsin State College of Milwaukee and the University Extension Division in Milwaukee. There was a football team, but no soccer team until 1974. Tuition was $90 a semester, compared to $4,700 a semester today. The library was located in Mellencamp Hall. There were only 4,500 students, compared to 28,000 students today. And much of what UWM did was influenced by UW-Madison. The UWM Post shows how much UW-Milwaukee has developed and grown since then.
Throughout the project, the library will push out samples of campus history on social media sites and also in the UWM Post. The online articles can be viewed here.