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Friday, May 13 • 11:15am - 11:30am
Connecting with the Past Online: The Medieval Portland Case Study

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Medieval Portland has developed over the last decade into a robust site housing a database of objects found in institutions throughout the Portland, Oregon region. The initiative originated in Portland State University’s nationally-recognized community based learning capstone program, and a defining feature is that it presents original research pursued by students as well as advanced scholars. It is precisely in that many of the works documented here are relatively modest that they have a distinct contribution to make—the efforts to digitize and publish online manuscripts have inexorably drifted to more prestigious works, leaving many elements of material culture underrepresented in the digital sphere. The Medieval Portland project brings together understudied materials from Portland-area collections into one website. These resources are there to enhance the study of history and visual culture for both students and teachers of regional educational institutions as well as ultimately the broader public.
The Medieval Portland database contains objects from a group of local institutions that are truly diverse—secular and religious, urban and rural, large and small. However varied, the collections that house these medieval manuscripts, paintings, and sculpture together share a paucity of resources that led to a situation in which the prior work on the objects was typically just limited cataloging notations.
As part of our effort to serve the community through our site, we sought and received a National Digital Humanities Award, which allows our current transition of the database to Artstor’s Shared Shelf. This change from the prior Drupal –based database allows us to embrace a broader audience through utilization of this collaborative scholarship portal. Using the foundation of earlier cataloging, nearly two hundred Medieval Portland capstone students over the last decade have pursued additional research and also created a wealth of other media such as photography, explanatory podcasts, video, and even a walking map to local resources.


Friday May 13, 2016 11:15am - 11:30am MST
COOR 186 975 S Myrtle Ave Arizona State University Tempe, AZ 85281
  Digital Humanities, Short Paper
  • Session Location COOR 186