September 22, 2008

New Zealand Online Collections and Repositories

Searching for the right image for your publication or website. From PHANZINE - Newsletter of the Professional Historians' Association of New Zealand/Aotearoa Vol. 14 No. 2, p.15, August 2008.

Matapihi -

Matapihi now searches for images from the collections of fifteen institutions, including the Alexander Turnbull Library, Archives New Zealand Te Rua Mahara o te Kawanatanga, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki, Auckland City Libraries, Auckland War Memorial Museum Tamaki Paenga Hira, Christchurch City Libraries, Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, New Zealand Electronic Text Centre, The New Zealand Film Archive Nga Kaitiaki o Nga Taonga Whitiahua, Otago Museum, Puke Ariki, The University of Auckland Library, University of Canturbury Library and University of Otago Library. Some institutions, like Archives New Zealand have added only specific collections to Matapihi, while other institutions such as the Turnbull have added their entire collections.

Timeframes -

Integrated into Matapihi is Timeframes, the Alexander Turnbull Library's online catalogue, which contains over 25,000 digitised images from the Library's collections - Turnbull Library Pictures, the Photographic archive, the Ephemera collection, the Prints and Drawings collection, the Map library and cartoon archive. When you are in Wellington you can flick through the Turnbull Library Pictures drawers on the ground floor - you never know what you'll find.

Tapuhi - http;//

If you still can't find what you are looking for amongst the Turnbull's digital collections, then Tapuhi is the next place to look. Tapuhi allows you to delve into the non-digitised collections, giving you the physical location of prints - usually to be found in Turnbull Library Pictures or the Photographic archive. Sometimes the catalogue record will just give you an indication of what treasures might be hidden - albums for example are often not fully catalogued due to the number of photos contained within.

Papers Past -

Papers Past now allows a full text search on 107,812 newspaper issues, dating from 1839-1920. You can view as a text document and also in the original newsprint format. The newspapers are printable and downloadable.

Auckland War Memorial Museum -

Auckland War Memorial Museum's collections databases are divided into three categories: human history, natural history and library services. If you are looking for historical photographs, head to the Library Services database. The new Library database website allows you to search for photographs under the advanced search function. If you are on the search for objects, have a look at the human and natural history catalogues. These have been further split into categories such as decorative arts, Korean collection, entomology and land invertebrates.

Te Papa Collections Online -

In the last couple of months Te Papa's art, photography, history and Pacific cultures catalogues have been made available through Collections Online (128,000 records). There are also around 16,000 Taonga Maori records available online. Be warned though - only about a fifth of these records contain images, so you are more than likely to come up dry when searching for objects in a general way (e.g. when searching for "shoes"). Searching under specific collections will yield more results than a general search - for example, the Photography collection holds a large cache of images, both historical and modern. Around 30,000 images are available online, and images are being added constantly as copyright and iwi clearances are obtained and more objects are photographed.

Another place to look for images is under specific exhibitions - Exhibitions
Exhibitions dating back to 2003 are searchable - many have their own mini site with images, or a showcase showing images from the exhibition. This is useful if you are sure you've seen that image/object somewhere before...

Puke Ariki -

Puke Ariki's online database allows you to search the artefact, pictorial and archive collections, drawing out a wealth of objects and images. Searching in the different collections is easy in the advanced search mode, and you can also search for only records with images. The online exhibitions also show case a variety of objects.

Auckland City Libraries Heritage Images Online -

Heritage Images Online showcases over 20,000 images from the Library's photographic collections. Also worth a look are the online exhibitions entitled Real Gold, which explore various themes and images from the collection.

Christchurch City Library -

A large collection of images is available online. You can search for images through their general library catalogue, by limiting your search to photographs. The Christchurch City Library has been very useful for finding early agricultural images, and contains a number of scans from newspapers, including the Weekly Press. The catalogue now brings up the actual image as well as the catalogue record for those images which have been digitised.

Pataka Ipurangi: Manawatu Memory Online

Launched earlier this year, Palmerston North City Library's new online image database is great. It includes a large variety of digitised images relating to the social, agricultural and business life of Palmerston North and surrounding areas. It is beautifully catalogued, with thorough key wording and details about the images where available.

Upper Hutt City Library

Launched under the title of Community Archives is the Upper Hutt City Library's online collection. The collection is made up of a wide range of original heritage material, including photographs, newspapers, archives, manuscripts, maps, oral history tapes, and other material relating to the history of Upper Hutt and its people. Almost 2,000 of the 2,500 photographs in the collection have been digitised and an advanced search allows you to search though either the digitised or undigitised collection. The photographs range form shops fronts to rugby teams.

The Fletcher Trust -

The Fletcher Trust manages the Fletcher Trust Collection of New Zealand artwork, and the Fletcher Challenge Archives of material from the former Fletcher Challenge Group. Both the art collection and archives are available online in digital form. The artwork collection includes works of a range of artists from John Kinder to Darcy Nicholas, as well as a vast number of ceramics. The archives include ephermera, documents and images relating to many facets of New Zealand's economic history. Companies such as Winstones, Wright Stevenson, Dalgety, Tasman Forestry and Fletchers itself are represented in the archive. Not all of the images are available digitally, but it is still a useful source, and covers a wider variety of themes than you might expect, including agriculture, employment, building, architecture, consumerism, rural life, shipping and technology.

University of Canterbury Digital Library -

Around 1000 images are available to view online as part of the University of Canterbury's Digital Library. They range from the Canterbury Frozen Meat Company collection to the Canterbury Mountaineering Club collection. This is just a small proportion of their 20,000 images, but it's a great start. The art collections are not yet available online, but you can also browse the documentary archives and architectural drawings collection.

Many more institutions out there have online material - this is just the start. Here are a few more:

* Wairarapa Archive -
Online catalogue available

* Hocken -
Online guides only available

* Tauranga City Libraries -
photographs/photo-gallery.aspx Around 6 000 images are available in their photo

* Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki -
Online catalogue available

* Dunedin Public Art Gallery -
Online Catalogue available

* Te Puna o Waiwhetu Christchurch Art Gallery -
Online catalogue available

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