Our collections and our partner network are growing! The collections of our newest hub, Digital Maryland, are now searchable in the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) alongside millions of resources from partners across the country. The new Maryland Service Hub represents a collaborative effort between Digital Maryland, a statewide digitization program, and University System of Maryland & Affiliated Institutions (USMAI), a consortium of seventeen public colleges and universities across the state. Through the efforts of Digital Maryland and USMAI, over 83,000 new resources from public libraries, museums, historical societies, and college libraries are now available via DPLA.
Digital Maryland offers a unique and rich array of materials that speak to the distinctive history of the state, the Chesapeake region, and its people, as well as to national history and culture. Explore the development of the nation’s earliest railroads through the B&O Railroad Museum collection, dive into the life and letters of one of American literature’s most intriguing writers with Enoch Pratt Free Library’s Edgar Allan Poe collection, and learn how women took charge of Maryland’s farms during World War I in Montgomery County Historical Society’s Woman’s Land Army of America collection–and that’s just a preview!
You will also find new materials to support your next research project, such as resources on African American life in Maryland, nineteenth-century diaries and personal correspondence, photographs documenting everyday life on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, and critical documents that help reveal the lives of enslaved people and families in the decades before the Civil War.
Take a look below at some of the new materials from Digital Maryland and start exploring today!
Interested in locomotive transportation? Check out the earliest trains of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, founded in 1828, which helped the growing city of Baltimore compete as a major trade and transportation hub in the nineteenth century. The B&O Railroad Museum collection contains over 150 images showcasing the development one of the first railroads in the United States. In this photograph you can see B&O Railroad Class A-B Locomotive, built by Baltimore foundry A. and W. Denmead and Sons in 1857, courtesy of B&O Railroad Museum via Digital Maryland.
The Views of African American Life in Maryland collection from Enoch Pratt Free Library provides insight into the social, economic, and political lives of African Americans in Maryland from 1890s to the 1970s through over 200 photographs. In this photograph, a young boy takes every opportunity to read, even while holding the reins for the horse-drawn Enoch Pratt Free Library book wagon as it visited Dallas Street, Baltimore in 1945.
Montgomery County Historical Society’s Women’s Land Army of America, 1918-1923 collection documents the experiences of the women who chipped in and took charge at local farms during World War I. In this photograph, “Farmerette” Miss Jane McIlheney from Washington, D.C., wrangles a calf on a farm in Rockville, Maryland around 1918, courtesy of Montgomery County Historical Society via Digital Maryland.
Explore the genius of poet and author Edgar Allan Poe, who called Baltimore home for many years, through the Enoch Pratt Free Library’s collection of letters and artifacts from his life. The most Poe-etic artifact in the collection dedicated to a man best known for the macabre? Perhaps this framed lock of hair from both Poe and his young wife Virginia Clemm Poe.
Organized to commemorate the sesquicentennial of the Civil War, Digital Maryland’s Civil War in Your Attic collection represents a statewide effort to locate, digitize, and preserve treasured materials documenting the Civil War and Reconstruction, held in private collections across the state. Among a trove of letters, diaries, photographs, reports, and more, you will find the discharge record for African American Union soldier George Washington, who served with the Massachusetts 55th Regiment, the second all-black regiment from the North organized after the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation.
Howard County Historical Society’s collection of manumissions, indentures, and bills of sale document the lives of some of the men, women, and families enslaved in Howard County before and during the Civil War. These records include several manumissions deeds for enslaved men who were granted freedom in return for military service for the Union during the Civil War, like John Anderson, who was manumitted by enslaver Arianna Banks on May 4, 1864.