Below is a selection of new digital collections recently added to Virginia Memory. Accessible through our digital asset management system, DigiTool, these collections are searchable by keywords, creator, and title. We also now have thumbnails, making these collections more browseable. We include born digital content, such as publications from state agencies, as well as photographic, art, manuscript, and print collections. We'd love to have your feedback on our new offerings and encourage you to come back often to see What's New!
Michael Miley (1841-1918), probably most famous for his portraits of Robert E. Lee, was a Rockbridge County native who contributed greatly to the burgeoning field of photography. In 1866, Miley partnered with businessman John C. Boude to open a photography studio at the corner of Main and Nelson Streets in Lexington. He purchased Boude's half of the business in 1870, named the studio the Stonewall Art Gallery, and found his niche as a portrait photographer. The Library of Virginia has a collection of 58 glass-plate negatives and 12 carte de visites taken in and around Miley's studio in Lexington. Although some of the images have been identified through crowdsourcing projects, most are unidentified. The most notable images in the collection are photographs of the singing group The Charity Nightingales and of the poet Spotswood Styles and his family.
Governor Patrick Henry's Executive papers primarily consist of incoming correspondence during Henry's three one-year terms as the first governor of Virginia between 6 July 1776 and 1 June 1779. The correspondence primarily relates to the Revolutionary War, Indian affairs, boundary disputes between Virginia & Pennsylvania in West Augusta, and the militia. Prominent correspondents from the United States government include John Hancock, Henry Laurens & John Jay, Presidents of Congress; Charles Thomson, Secretary of Congress; and Richard Henry Lee, Francis Lightfoot Lee, John Banister, & Thomas Adams, representatives to the Continental Congress. The digitization of this collection was funded through the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).
The first annual Virginia Czech and Slovak Folklife Festival, sponsored by the Virginia Czech/Slovak Heritage Society, took place on 19 October 2013 at the Prince George County Regional Heritage Center. The Library of Virginia, in partnership with the Society, was present to scan and digitize family documents and photographs documenting the history of the Czech and Slovak families in Virginia.
Funding received from the Save America's Treasures program allowed the Library of Virginia to conserve, enhance description, and digitize the original letters contained in the Executive Papers of Governor Thomas Jefferson, 1779-1781. The correspondence primarily relates to the Revolutionary War, Indian affairs, the Articles of Confederation, the settlement of the boundary between Virginia & Pennsylvania, arms, ammunition, and the militia.
The Kaine Email Project @ LVA makes accessible the email records of the administration of Tim Kaine, Governor of Virginia from 2006-2010. Researchers can browse and search the inboxes of the Executive Office, cabinet secretaries, and their staffs. The collection is full-text searchable and provides important background information useful to anyone researching the challenges of modern government and society in early 21st century Virginia.
The Web archive of the Administration of Governor Robert F. McDonnell (2010-2014) contains archived versions of Web sites for the Governor's Office, his initiative sites, the sites of his cabinet secretaries, and the Governor's YouTube channel. Also included are the related sites for the First Lady (Maureen McDonnell), as well as the Lt. Governor (Bill Bolling), and Attorney General (Ken Cuccinelli), two statewide officials elected in the same cycle as Governor McDonnell.
The WPA Historic Houses Drawings Collection includes 140 drawings in pen-and-ink, pencil, and watercolor of houses, courthouses, churches, mill houses, and taverns, representing 39 Virginia counties. From 1932 to 1937, the Virginia State Commission on Conservation and Development's Division of History and Archaeology received funds from the Works Progress Administration's (WPA) Federal Art Project to commission five artists, including Rex M. Allyn, Edward A. Darby, Dorothea A. Farrington, E. Neville Harnsberger, and Elsie J. Mistie, to create drawings for a publication on historic Virginia shrines. Although the drawings were never published, likely due to diminishing funds, the collection presents an important record of Virginia architecture, both traditional and vernacular, and includes images of structures that are no longer standing today. The photographs from which the drawings were based are part of the WPA Photograph and Negative Collection at the Library of Virginia.
During World War II, the United States government mobilized the best ad-men available to create posters that would speak to the nation. The themes portrayed played on deep levels of fear, pride, duty, and victory. In order to beat the enemy, citizens were told through posters that they needed to work hard and sacrifice at home. To that end, the ad-men succeeded. People felt as though their efforts at home were truly helping "the boys" overseas. The Library of Virginia's World War II Poster Collection consists of over 400 original posters.
This collection of text and images features entire works, as well as selected title pages, frontispieces, illustrations, plats, maps, and designs from the pages of the Rare Book Collection. The Rare Book Collection houses 51,700 titles focused on the history and formation of Virginia, early Virginia imprints, and also includes other diverse topics that span the 16th through the 21st centuries such as agriculture, architecture, botany, customs and trades, genealogy, law, mathematics, natural history, theology, and the history of our state and the nation.